It could do so by undermining the interests of Washington and its allies in the Middle East, perhaps by increasing support for Yemen’s Houthis. The Saudi Arabia and Emirati forces fighting the Houthis both receive military backing from the United States and other Western allies. “There is a real risk of escalation, especially between Iran and Israel. While the Gulf states may want to see the U.S. and Israel try to cut Iran to size, I don’t think they want to get dragged into a direct confrontation themselves. The consequences could be severe,” said Joost Hiltermann, Program Director, Middle East and North Africa at the International Crisis Group.
The UAE, Saudi Arabia and Bahrain announced on Tuesday their support for US withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal, with Riyadh’s ambassador to Washington blasting Tehran’s malicious behaviour in the Middle East. The Emirates, according to a statement released by the official news agency WAM, issued its support for Mr Trump’s decision, and called upon the international community and parties in the Iran nuclear agreement to “heed Mr Trump’s call for a Middle East free of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction.” In addition, the UAE's Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash tweeted in support of Mr Trump’s decision: “Iran’s rhetoric & aggressive regional actions were the background to a flawed deal. The veneer of Tehran’s compliance contradicted its bellicose policies. President Trump’s decision is the correct one”.
After consulting with US "friends" across the Middle East, Trump said his country would "not be held hostage to nuclear blackmail". The UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation called on the international community and the other states that are party to the agreement, to support President Trump’s stand for making the Middle East a zone free of nuclear and other weapons of mass destruction, in order to maintain global security and stability. Similarly, Saudi Arabia said it "supports and welcomes" the decision.
In a series of tweets, Foreign Minister Shaikh Khalid Bin Ahmad Al Khalifa praised the leadership of the US president and lashed out at the deal. “The decision by President Donald Trump to pull out of the Iran nuclear deal and to re-impose sanctions of the Iranian regime is an outstanding leadership stance. Bahrain supports and welcomes it,” he posted on the microblog.
Saudi Arabia and the UAE are committed to ensuring stability in the oil markets, for the benefit of producers and consumers alike, and for sustaining growth in the global economy,. KSA and UAE said they would work with major producers within and outside Opec (organisation of the petroleum exporting countries) as well as major consumers to mitigate the impact of any potential supply shortages.
Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir declared on Wednesday that the Kingdom would develop its own nuclear weapons if Iran does. Speaking to CNN television, he said: "If Iran acquires nuclear capability we will do everything we can to do the same." "We are trying to avoid at all costs direct military action with Iran, but Iran's behavior such as this cannot continue. This amounts to a declaration of war."
Surging oil prices mean the big Arab countries of the Gulf -- especially Saudi Arabia -- look set to gain financially as well as politically. Saudi Arabia may be able to start increasing oil production at a time when oil prices are already high. This gives them extra funds to support their investment program, while still showing a narrowing of the deficit. Higher oil income would improve liquidity in the UAE banking sector, aiding the whole financial industry despite any rise in geopolitical tensions related to Iran.