Seventeen heads of state from across the Arab world -- minus Syrian President Bashar al-Assad -- gathered in the eastern Saudi city of Dhahran for the 29th Arab League summit, which this year comes as world powers face off over Syria and tensions rise between Riyadh and Tehran.
The meeting opened only 24 hours after a barrage of strikes launched by the United States, Britain and France hit targets they said were linked to chemical weapons development in Syria, which was suspended from the league seven years ago.
"We renew our strong condemnation of Iran's terrorist acts in the Arab region and reject its blatant interference in the affairs of Arab countries," the king said.
And despite being a stalwart ally of the United States, the ruler also criticised US President Donald Trump's controversial decision to recognise Jerusalem as Israel's capital and shift the US embassy there.
"We reiterate our rejection of the US decision on Jerusalem," Salman said. "East Jerusalem is an integral part of the Palestinian territories." The king said he had named this year's meeting "the Jerusalem summit so that the entire world knows Palestine and its people remain at the heart of Arab concerns".
Arab ministers at a preliminary meeting in Riyadh on Thursday focused heavily on blocking the embassy move, unanimously condemning Trump's decision.
Earlier this month, the monarch reiterated the kingdom's "steadfast stance on the Palestinian issue and the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people to an independent state with Jerusalem as its capital".
The remark suggested increasing rapprochement with Israel, which like Riyadh, sees Tehran as its arch rival.
Iran is backing Shiite Huthi rebels that Riyadh opposes in Yemen and on Sunday Salman praised "the UN Security Council's statement denouncing the Iranian-made ballistic missile fire on Saudi cities." Last month the Security Council issued a statement condemning Huthi missile attacks on Saudi, but did not name Iran.
Among the leaders in attendance was Sudan's Omar al-Bashir, who walked the red carpet and was greeted by King Salman. Bashir is wanted by the International Criminal Court for five counts of crimes against humanity, three counts of genocide and two counts of war crimes.
Summits of the Arab League, established in 1945, rarely result in action. The last time the bloc made a concrete move was in 2011, when it suspended Syria's membership over the Assad regime's role in the war.
Syria's war, the most complex of the region's conflicts, is the main point of contention pitting Riyadh and its allies, who mainly back Sunni rebels, against regime backer Iran and its Lebanese ally Hezbollah.
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