RIYADH  - People in the Middle East will lose sleep over nuclear deal between global powers and Iran, a Saudi foreign policy adviser said on Sunday.

At the time the adviser spoke, Saudi Arabia had not officially responded to news of the deal under which Western countries will ease sanctions in return for curbs on Iran's nuclear program.

Riyadh has frequently called for Washington to maintain a tough line with Tehran. Abdullah al-Askar, chairman of the foreign affairs committee in Saudi Arabia's appointed Shoura Council, a quasi-parliament that advises the government on policy, stressed that he had no knowledge of his government's official response but was personally worried.

"I am afraid Iran will give up something on to get something else from the big powers in terms of regional politics. And I'm worrying about giving Iran more space or a freer hand in the region," he said."The government of Iran, month after month, has proven that it has an ugly agenda in the region, and in this regard no one in the region will sleep and assume things are going smoothly," Askar said.

"The people of the region know Iranian policies and Iranian ambitions. And they know that Iran will interfere in the politics of many countries in the region," Askar added.Robert Jordan, a former US ambassador to Riyadh, said the Saudis could be even more worried about Iran gaining influence in the region than about it obtaining an atomic bomb.

"The deal may relieve the Saudis of having to worry they would have to counter a nuclear threat from Iran, but it doesn't counter their geopolitical worries which may be more profound," said Robert Jordan, US ambassador to Riyadh from 2001-03.