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Saudi Arabia, Syria to Reopen Embassies Restoring Relations

This is a locator map for Syria with its capital, Damascus. (AP Photo)
This is a locator map for Syria with its capital, Damascus. (AP Photo)

Saudi Arabia and Syria will reopen diplomatic missions between the two countries now that relations have improved 11 years after the facilities were closed, the two nations foreign ministries said Tuesday.

The announcements came nearly a month after Syria and Saudi Arabia said they were moving toward reopening embassies and resuming airline flights. That had followed a visit by Syria’s top diplomat to the kingdom, the first since Saudi Arabia cut off diplomatic relations with Syria in 2012 and a visit by Syria’s foreign minister to Riyadh.

On Sunday, the 22-member Arab League agreed to reinstate Syria, ending a 12-year suspension and taking another step toward bringing Syrian President Bashar Assad, a long-time regional pariah, back into the fold.

Syria was widely shunned by Arab governments over the Assad government’s brutal crackdown on protesters in a 2011 uprising that descended into civil war. The breakdown in relations culminated with Syria being ousted from the Arab League.

After the conflict started, Saudi Arabia backed the Syrian opposition.

Related Story: Pariah No More? Arab League Reinstates Bashar Assad’s Syria

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