Saudi Arabia severs diplomatic ties with Iran

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Saudi Arabia's foreign minister on Sunday said Riyadh is severing diplomatic ties with Iran amid tensions between the regional rivals.

Adel al-Jubeir said in a news conference that the Iranian diplomatic mission has been given 48 hours to leave Saudi Arabia, according to multiple reports.

The announcement comes after Iranians stormed the Saudi embassy in Tehran on Saturday in retaliation for the execution of a prominent Shiite Muslim cleric.

Most of the 47 prisoners executed on Saturday in Saudi Arabia, a Sunni kingdom, were al Qaeda affiliates accused of taking part in terrorist attacks over the last decade.

But prominent Shiite Muslim cleric Nimr al-Nimr was also among those executed.

Nimr was hailed as a champion of the marginalized Shiite minority in Saudi Arabia. But the government said Nimr was one of four Shiites involved in shooting police officers.

Hundreds of Saudi Arabian Shiite Muslims marched through the streets in protest, according to Reuters. They chanted “Down with the Al Saud!,” the name of the royal family.

The powerful Iranian Revolutionary Guard said “harsh revenge” would topple “this pro-terrorist, anti-Islamic regime,” Reuters reported.