Saudis Satisfied With Obama Assurance Iran Deal Will Bring Mideast Stability
Saudis and Americans share many strategic objectives and depend on each other on a number of core security, economic, and political issues.
Yeganeh Torbati and Julia Edwards
Sep 06, 2015 2:58 PM
Saudi Arabia's King Salman, right, meets with U.S. President Barack Obama at Erga Palace in Riyadh, January 27, 2015. Reuters
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REUTERS - Saudi Arabia is satisfied with assurances from U.S. President Barack Obama about the Iran nuclear deal and believes the agreement will contribute to security and stability in the Middle East, a senior Saudi official said on Friday.
Saudi King Salman met with Obama at the White House on Friday to seek more support in countering Iran, as the Obama administration aimed to use the visit to shore up relations after a period of tensions.
The visit is the king's first to the United States since ascending to the throne in January 2015, and comes after the United States agreed to a nuclear deal with Iran in July.
The U.S.-Saudi relationship has suffered strain because of what Riyadh sees as Obama's withdrawal from the region, a lack of direct U.S. action against President Bashar al-Assad in Syria, and a perceived U.S. tilt towards Iran since the 2011 Arab uprisings.
But the countries share many strategic objectives and depend on each other on a number of core security, economic, and political issues.
Speaking after the meeting between Obama and Salman, Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir said Obama had assured the Saudi king that the agreement prevents Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon, includes inspections of military and suspected sites, and has a provision for the snapback of sanctions if Iran violates the agreement.
Under those conditions, al-Jubeir said, Saudi Arabia supported the deal.
"Now we have one less problem for the time being to deal with, with regards to Iran," al-Jubeir said. "We can now focus more intensely on the nefarious activities that Iran is engaged in the region."
Gulf Arab states had previously expressed their support for the Iran nuclear deal, but fear that the lifting of sanctions on Iran would enable it to pursue destabilizing policies in the Middle East.
Salman skipped a Gulf Arab summit at Camp David in May, a move widely seen as a diplomatic snub over Obama's Iran strategy, though both governments denied that interpretation.
Critics say the nuclear deal will empower Iran economically to increase its support of militant groups in the region.
Saudi Arabia and Iran are opposed on a number of regional issues, especially the 4 1/2-year-long Syrian civil war and unrest in Yemen, where a coalition of Arab states led by Riyadh, assisted by the United States, are targeting Iran-allied Houthi forces.
Obama said on Friday that he and Salman share concerns about Yemen and the need to restore a functioning government and address the humanitarian situation there.
U.S. Deputy National Security Advisor Ben Rhodes said ahead of Salman's visit that the United States believed more care needs to be taken to avoid civilian casualties in the air strikes against Houthi forces in Yemen.
Al-Jubeir said on Friday that the humanitarian crisis in Yemen was being exacerbated by the Houthis and that supplies were at risk of being diverted from Yemenis who need them most, but that Saudi Arabia was working with international organizations to send supplies to Yemen.
A Saudi-led coalition has been conducting air strikes across Yemen against Iranian-allied Houthi forces since March, pushing back Houthi forces but drawing criticism from international aid and rights groups for a mounting civilian death toll.
Saudi Defense Minister Mohammed bin Salman also met on Friday with U.S. Secretary of Defense Ash Carter and the two discussed Saudi Arabia's underlying defense requirements, the Pentagon said.
The Obama administration is focused on providing the assistance that the president promised at the Camp David summit, including helping Gulf states integrate ballistic missile defense systems and beef up cyber and maritime security.
Saudi Arabia remains the world's largest oil exporter, and its commitment to pumping oil freely despite a recent price decline has helped contribute to sustaining the U.S. economic recovery. Obama and Salman will discuss the world economy and energy issues, Obama told reporters on Friday.
Saudi Arabia has also joined the United States and other Arab states in air strikes against the Islamic State jihadist movement in Syria, also called ISIS.
"We continue to cooperate extremely closely in countering terrorist activities in the region and around the world, including the battle against ISIS," Obama said on Friday.
Obama and Salman discussed the potential fast-tracking of the release of American military technology and weapons systems to Saudi Arabia, al-Jubeir said, and discussed a "new strategic partnership" between the two countries, although he gave few details.
The Gulf state is in advanced discussions with the U.S. government about buying two frigates based on a coastal warship that Lockheed Martin Corp is building for the U.S. Navy, a deal valued at well over $1 billion.
The sale would be the cornerstone of a long-delayed multibillion-dollar modernization of the Royal Saudi Navy's Gulf-patrolling eastern fleet of aging U.S. warships and would include smaller patrol boats.
read more: http://www.haaretz.com/news/middle-east/1.674751
It looks so sweet for the world to see the Saudi king and US President talking in a friendly atmosphere isn’t it.
But a big but with what audacity a leader of Muslim UMAH talks to the lone super power who gave the assurance of security to whom only Saudi Arab.
And who dared asks the world SUNNI umah that left the other Muslim Countries of Mid East in the hands of the NAZI Bastard Israel who created ISIS and itself (ISRAEL) bastard to butcher the Muslims.
Is this is what why the Muslims SUNNI countries believed Saudi Arab as its Leader?
A Muslim country that can not fight for its own security What would it look after for others. In fact it has no right to exist
The Saudi Arab should now go nuke if Israel can go Nuclear what stops Saudi Arabia to go nuclear. It has to be nuclear if it wants to stand straight enough to fight for the Muslim Sunni Umah and not sit at the foot of Israel to beg protection and digest hegemony by the sons of swines.
Sunni Muslims are proud of their past and would like to be proud to be now and in future too. But how when the leader of the Sunni’s plead to others for protection for itself.
US had been our friend that is OK but Israel is NOT! these bastards are vicious poisonous snakes, they are not fit enough to be the friends of Muslim ever in this world.
These Zionists are Muslim killers and one day they would get killed by the grace of GOD’S Justice.
Because these Zionist if are friends of a mighty power that power declares itself indirectly as unfriendly to the SUNNI MUSLIM by being the best friend of an enemy of killer of The SUNNIS as is felt by the SUNNIS.
Don’t have to say so it more so because these Zionists are enemy of the entire world.
Zionists leader Netanyahu, his supporters and his followers have proved over and over again that they are treacherous, they are traitors and have violated the US national constitution.
In addition, insulted the American Nation by committing repeated genocide and is still continuing to do so unabated.
And Saudi Arab, where are they hiding like a coward. Shame on you . You have betrayed the Muslim UMAH by indirectly supporting Israel when they killed innocent Palestinians.
Be happy with your poodle Jordan, Egypt and some more . what more you want to defame the SUNNIS.
Now the Sunni’s have to think afresh. It is not that you Saudi Arab do not have enough money to become the world’s one of the most powerful nation.
But no you won’t, rather you would like to suck the Zionists hegemony for your supporters. What is the use? What more you expect then to hate you.