Iran Slams UN Human Rights Council for Electing Saudi Arabia as a Member

Iran's Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araghchi commented on the election, 'that human rights is merely in direction of political interests.'

Saudi Arabia Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, center, arrives at the Hangzhou International Expo Center to attend the G20 summit in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province, China, Sunday, Sept. 4, 2016.
Saudi Arabia Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman arrives at the Hangzhou International Expo Center to attend the G20 summit in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province, China, Sunday, Sept. 4, 2016. Rolex dela Pena, Pool Photo via AP

Iran has criticized the re-election of Saudi Arabia to the UN Human Rights Council.

A Sunday report by the official IRNA news agency quotes Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araghchi as saying that the election is, "the best indication that human rights is merely in direction of political interests."

Regional rivals Iran and Saudi Arabia have no diplomatic relations and support opposite sides in conflicts in Syria and Yemen.

Iraq, Egypt, China, Brazil, Rwanda, Hungary, Cuba, South Africa, Japan, Tunisia, the U.S. and U.K. also won seats Friday on the council.

Human rights groups had called on countries to reject the candidacy of Saudi Arabia, which has been accused of indiscriminate attacks against civilians in Yemen. A Saudi-led military coalition is battling Iran-backed Shiite rebels there.