Saudi Arabia has charged 32 people in the kingdom of spying for Iran and the accused are currently facing trial, local media reported on Monday.
The country’s Bureau of Investigation and Public Prosecution presented the list of accusations against the accused at a Specialised Criminal Court in Riyadh on Sunday, Al Arabiya reported.
The 32 accused include Saudi nationals from Al Qatif, an Iranian and an Afghan. They were detained in 2013.
The charges included establishing a spy ring along with members of the Iranian intelligence and passing on “dangerous” military information, divulging secrets regarding defense strategies, seeking to sabotage Saudi economic interests and inciting sectarian strife.
They were also charged with supporting riots in Al Qatif, recruiting others for espionage, sending encrypted reports to Iranian intelligence, owning banned books, carrying out hostile acts and committing high treason against the king.
Some of them were also accused of meeting Iranian supreme leader Ali Khamenei in collaboration with Iranian Intelligence members, Al Arabiya reported.
Saudi Arabia accuses Iranian interference of causing problems across the Middle East in countries such as Syria, Yemen, Lebanon and Bahrain.
Tensions between the two countries further escalated in January this year when Saudi broke off diplomatic ties with Iran.
The decision was taken after the kingdom’s embassy in Tehran was attacked by angry Iranians protesting Saudi Arabia’s execution of a Shiite cleric.