- Warns oil prices could spike unless world unites to deter Iran
- Open to all initiatives for political solution to end Yemen war
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman warned that war between his country and Iran would lead to a "total collapse of the global economy" and said he prefers non-military pressure to stymie Iranian ambitions.
"If the world does not take a strong and firm action to deter Iran, we will see further escalations that will threaten world interests," the Saudi Crown Prince said in an interview for CBS's "60 Minutes" on Sunday.
"Oil prices will jump to unimaginably high numbers that we haven't seen in our lifetimes," he said, adding that a "political and peaceful solution is much better than the military one."
The September 14 aerial attacks on two Saudi oil installations that knocked out almost 5% of global supply, which the US and Saudi Arabia blamed on Iran, were motivated by "stupidity," the prince said. "There is no strategic goal. Only a fool would attack 5% of global supplies."
During the interview CBS aired rare photage of the attack on Saudi Aramco saying that the images were never before released, and that they got them from the Saudi state oil company, Aramco itself.
When asked about how Saudi Arabia with all its military capabilities could it not prevent an attack like this?
Crown Prince answered saying that "Saudi Arabia is almost the size of a continent, it is bigger than all of Western Europe. We have 360 degrees of threats. It's challenging to cover all of this fully."
Adding "Saudia Arabia's air defenses include US Patriot and Hawk missile systems which were not designed to shoot down drones."
Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman said: “If Iran stops its support of the Houthi militia then the political solution would be much easier. Today we open all initiatives to a political solution in Yemen. We hope this happens today rather than tomorrow."
Asked if he was saying he wanted a negotiated settlement to the war in Yemen he replied: “We are doing this every day.”
“But we try to turn this discussion into an actual implementation on the ground, and the Houthis – a few days ago – announced a ceasefire from their side. We consider it a positive step to push for more serious and active political dialogue.”
The Crown Prince was asked how he could trust a Houthi ceasefire: “As a leader I must always be optimistic every day. If I am a pessimist, I should leave my post and work somewhere else."
Crown prince Mohammed Bin Salman concluded the interview modestly saying that he learns from his mistakes and "that even prophets made mistakes. So how come we, as humans, expect not to make mistakes? The important thing is that we learn from these mistakes and not repeat them."