A Saudi Arabian court on Wednesday sentenced two Saudi security workers to four years imprisonment and 1,000 lashes each on charges of sexually abusing Iranian pilgrims.
The spokesman for the Saudi Interior Ministry, Mansour al-Turki, said the case had strained ties between the two countries.
The court’s decision was in response to complaints that two Iranian teenage boys had been molested by security personnel at the airport in Jeddah.
Turki said the Iranian ambassador in Riyadh had been informed of the legal steps relating to the case.
However, the ruling could be appealed but there has been no official reaction from Iran.
The incident, which took place in March, triggered official and street protests in Iran.
At the time, the Iranian Foreign Ministry summoned the Saudi Charge d ‘affaires in Tehran and demanded that Saudi Arabia severely punish the suspects.
Hundreds of Iranians protested outside the Saudi embassy in Tehran and tried to attack the mission.
Tensions mounted between Saudi Arabia and its regional rival, Iran, since the Saudis and fellow Sunni countries started an air campaign in late March against Iran-backed Shiite rebels in neighbouring Yemen.
Tehran has denounced the military intervention.

dpa/NAN


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