By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
Published: December 6, 2011
U.S. and South Korea Renew Talks on Nuclear Technology (December 7, 2011)
Times Topics: Iran's Nuclear Program | Nuclear Weapons
But it also reflected the hardening views among the Persian Gulf’s Arab states that they must rely on themselves — and not just on Western protection — as tensions with Iran grow worse.
Kuwaiti authorities are pressing ahead with several prosecutions against people accused of being Iranian spies, and Bahrain’s rulers contend that a cell linked to Iran sought to attack the Saudi Embassy.
Meanwhile, the United Arab Emirates is close to finishing a pipeline that would carry oil directly to Indian Ocean shipping lanes, bypassing the choke point at the Strait of Hormuz, which Iran has at times threatened to shut off to shipping.
In meetings last week, Arab envoys from the gulf agreed to study proposals to pool their military forces into a regional command, in an apparent reply to Iran’s expanding land and sea powers.
Prince Turki said at the forum on Monday that an Iranian quest for nuclear weapons and Israel’s presumed nuclear arsenal might force Saudi Arabia to follow suit. Most defense analysts believe that Israel has nuclear weapons, but it has refused to confirm or deny their existence.
“It is our duty toward our nation and people to consider all possible options, including the possession of these weapons,” Prince Turki was quoted as saying.