LONDON (RAHNUMA): A US-Saudi Strategic Dialogue in Washington has highlighted both countries’ commitment to “countering and deterring the threat that Iranian malign activity poses to regional security and prosperity.”
The talks, co-chaired by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal Bin Farhan, also underscored “the extensive security, economic and cultural ties” between the two nations.
A joint statement yesterday came as Saudi Arabia and the US celebrated the 75th anniversary of a partnership established during the historic 1945 meeting between President Franklin D. Roosevelt and King Abdul Aziz aboard the USS Quincy.
In addition to the common Iranian threat, the dialogues held on Oct. 14 in Washington focused on range of issues and conflicts in the region.
In Yemen, the US acknowledged Riyadh’s leadership within the Saudi-led Coalition and the Kingdom’s “commitment to end the Yemeni conflict through political negotiations.”
Mutual efforts to enhance security in Iraq were also discussed, with both sides highlighting the importance of their close partnership in combating terrorism in the country. The US sees the role of the Kingdom as key for regional and international stability.
The US also praised Saudi Arabia’s progress in implementing Vision 2030 and adopting wide economic and social reforms. Washington commended the Kingdom for its G20 leadership, and for its investment in global health and financial response to the coronavirus pandemic.
The joint statement also offered details of discussions between Pompeo and Prince Farhan on defense cooperation to deter regional threats, as well as security and intelligence cooperation in the fight against terrorist groups, “which have been instrumental in saving countless American and Saudi lives.”
Other subjects included infrastructure protection and public security, creating durable energy markets, and restoring international travel and transport as part of the economic recovery from the pandemic.
Talks explored coordination between Washington and Riyadh on issues of cybersecurity and “enhancing diplomatic, cultural and consular cooperation, including major construction projects to expand the US Embassy and consulates in the Kingdom.”
Expansion of the US platform for diplomatic engagement with Saudi Arabia “signifies our enduring commitment to achieving our mutual security and economic objectives,” the statement said.
The two countries announced the formation of bilateral working groups to pave the way for future dialogues.
These include security and intelligence partnerships, defense cooperation planning, shared economic and energy interests, bilateral education and culture cooperation, and cybersecurity cooperation.