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Saudi Arabia leads Arab nations in condemning Iran, Hezbollah

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Saudi Arabia Over Iran Threat

Arab foreign ministers called on Sunday on the Arab group in the United Nations to take the necessary steps for holding an emergency session in the Security Council to discuss alleged threats from Iran to Arab countries and to lodge an official complaint against the country's violations.

Regional tensions have risen between Sunni monarchy Saudi Arabia and Shi'ite Islamist Iran over Lebanese Prime Minister Saad al-Hariri's surprise resignation and after an escalation in Yemen's conflict.

With the absolutist kingdom, Israel is now working on common concerns over Iran, the cabinet minister said.

Addressing a meeting of Arab foreign ministers in Cairo, Saudi Foreign Minister Adel Al-Jubeir said the pan-Arab organization needed to take a decision to be "non-compromising" in dealing with Iran.

Arab League Secretary-General Ahmed Aboul Gheit arrived in Beirut on Monday - the day after his urgent meeting in the Egyptian capital with Arab foreign ministers, at which he condemned "the firing of an Iranian-made ballistic missile from Yemeni territories to Riyadh" and considered it "blatant aggression against Saudi Arabia and a threat to Arab national security".

Iran on Monday dismissed as "worthless" a resolution by Arab League foreign ministers that accused the Islamic republic of "aggression" against Arab states.

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While not mentioning Iran by name, he said Lebanon condemned all attacks against Arab nations, but blamed exploitable inter-Arab divisions that allowed global and regional powers to promote their interests. A second Reuters source, a senior politician close to Saudi-allied Hariri, said Saudi Arabia had ordered him to resign and put him under house arrest.

Hezbollah, both a military force and a political movement, is part of a Lebanese government made up of rival factions, and an ally of Lebanese President Michel Aoun.

The Arab ministers Sunday called the firing of the missile an "aggression" against Saudi Arabia and a "threat to the Arab and global security". Alluding to the November 4 attack, he said it delivered a message to Arab nations that their capitals were within the range of Iranian missiles.

Saudi Arabia and members of Hariris Future Movement have denied reports that he is under house arrest. The top military official then said his country was ready to share intelligence on Iran with Riyadh.

"The Iranian threats have gone beyond all limits and are pushing the region toward a unsafe precipice", Abul Gheit added. Saudi Arabia has rallied its allies, including Bahrain, to isolate Iran diplomatically, but Tehran's role in fighting ISIS and its rapidly expanding sphere of influence has gained it allies, especially in Lebanon, Iraq and Syria. Iran's backing for militias such as Hezbollah have helped defeat ISIS, but have also greatly expanded Iran's foothold in the region, incurring the wrath of Saudi Arabia.

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