Saudis satisfied with Obama's assurances on Iran deal

Saudi Arabia Foreign Minister says they are satisfied with assurances US gave about Iran deal

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz and President of the United States, Barack Obama

King Salman of Saudi Arabia, on Friday, arrived in the US for his first official visit, since taking the throne in January 2015.  His main agenda during his first historic visit to the US, will be discussing the nuclear deal between Iran and P5+1 countries including China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States, plus Germany.

The historic deal concerns the Gulf States, because of the possibility of a broader Iranian influence in the Middle East, Gulf states are concerned about the role Iran is playing in Yemen, where a war between Houthi forces and forces loyal to Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi has gained momentum since the Saudi led Operation Decisive Force began in March. The civil war in Syria and the recent collapse in global oil prices are also an issue of concern for the Gulf states.

At the same time, both the US and Saudi Arabia are seeking to renew their historic partnership.

The meeting has an important meaning for President Obama, who is trying to increase support for the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

The plan is opposed by the unified Republican Congress, according to the Republicans, the plan is a "historic mistake."

White House Spokesman, Josh Earnest said "The president and the king will discuss a range of issues and focus on ways to further strengthen the bilateral relationship, including our joint security and counterterrorism efforts," and added that "They will also discuss regional topics, including the conflicts in Yemen and Syria, and steps to counter Iran's destabilising activities in the region."

Human rights groups and critics of the war in Yemen, issued their concerns to President Obama and said that he should use Friday’s meeting to press for an end to the fighting, which has so far killed more than 2000 civilians, according to United Nations.

Pressure by President Obama to King Salman about the humanitarian crisis in Yemen, could ensure humanitarian organisations are given unrestricted access to Yemen.

Obama said "We share concerns about Yemen and the need to restore a function government that is inclusive and that can relieve the humanitarian situation there.’’

At a press briefing in the Saudi Arabian embassy on Friday, Saudi Foreign Minister, Adel al-Jubei, talked about the effects the nuclear deal could have on Iran's influence in the region.

"The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is satisfied with these assurances after having spent the last two months consulting with its allies in Europe and other places. We believe this agreement will contribute to security and stability in the region by preventing Iran from acquiring a nuclear capability." said the Saudi Foreign Minister.

Jubeir also talked about civil war in Yemen, which was one of the main topics of the meeting

Jubeir said that Syrian President, Bashar al-Assad has lost all his legitimacy and had no role in the future of the country.


TRTWorld and agencies