German Vice Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel urged Saudi Arabia on Sunday to stop supporting religious radicals, amid growing concern among some lawmakers in Berlin about the funding of militant mosques by the world’s biggest oil exporter.

The unusual criticism of the Gulf state follows a report by Germany’s foreign intelligence agency which suggested that Saudi foreign policy was becoming more “impulsive”.

The German government rebuked the BND agency for making such suggestions about Saudi Arabia, an important business partner that is involved in international talks to find a political solution to the Syria crisis..

“We need Saudi Arabia to solve the regional conflicts,” Sigmar Gabriel, the head of the Social Democrats (SPD) who share power with conservative Chancellor Angela Merkel, told the mass-circulation newspaper Bild am Sonntag.

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