Iran, Saudi Arabia Step Up War of Words Over Executed Shiite Cleric | NBC New York
National & International News
The day’s top national and international news

Iran, Saudi Arabia Step Up War of Words Over Executed Shiite Cleric

    processing...

    NEWSLETTERS

    AP
    Iranian protesters upset over the execution of a Shiite cleric Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr in Saudi Arabia, set fire to the Saudi embassy in Tehran, while a group of Iranian security protect Saudi Arabia's embassy in Tehran, Iran, Sunday, Jan. 3, 2016. Iran has strongly condemned Saudi Arabia's execution of Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr. Al-Nimr, arrested in 2012, was a central figure in demonstrations by the kingdom's Shiite minority calling for greater rights.

    Flames and smoke poured out of Saudi Arabia's embassy in Iran on Sunday amid a mounting backlash to the kingdom's execution of a prominent Shiite cleric, NBC News reported.

    Saudi Arabia announced Saturday that 47 prisoners had been executed — including Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr. The news sparked fears of sectarian violence and deepening tensions between two bitter rivals: Sunni Saudi Arabia and Shiite powerhouse Iran.

    Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei responded with fury to the execution, calling it a "huge crime" that Saudi Arabia will face "divine revenge" for.