President Trump and Saudi Arabia's King Salman agreed on creating a safe zone for Muslim refugees within the Middle East, the New Indian Express (as well as Reuters and Bloomberg) reported.
Conservatives have long asked why America and Europe must take in refugees when their Arab Muslim neighbors have the money to help their fellow Muslims.
Trump is making it so.
Far from being ignorant of the situation in the Middle East, Trump knows the area well and has done business there. While I am far from comfortable with working with the House of Saud, I prefer it to the ayatollahs in Iran.
The Sunnis and the Shi-as are engaged in a proxy war over control of Mecca.
The United States and the rest of the world need to be careful. I am convinced Iran's nukes are aimed at Saudi Arabia, not Israel.
From the New Indian Express:
WASHINGTON: Saudi Arabia's King Salman has backed US President Donald Trump's request to have safe zones in war-torn Syria and Yemen as the two leaders agreed to strengthen bilateral economic and energy cooperation, the White House has said.
"The President requested and the King agreed to support safe zones in Syria and Yemen, as well as supporting other ideas to help the many refugees who are displaced by the ongoing conflicts," the White House said after Trump and the Saudi King had their first telephonic conversation yesterday.
During the call, the two leaders reaffirmed the longstanding friendship and strategic partnership between the US and Saudi Arabia.
"They agreed on the importance of strengthening joint efforts to fight the spread of radical Islamic terrorism and also on the importance of working jointly to address challenges to regional peace and security, including the conflicts in Syria and Yemen," the White House said.From Reuters:
A statement after the phone call said the two leaders agreed on the importance of strengthening joint efforts to fight the spread of Islamic State militants.
"The president requested and the King agreed to support safe zones in Syria and Yemen, as well as supporting other ideas to help the many refugees who are displaced by the ongoing conflicts," the statement said.
The Saudi Press Agency, in its readout of the call, made no specific mention of safe zones. It said the two leaders had affirmed the "depth and durability of the strategic relationship" between the two countries.
A senior Saudi source told Reuters the two leaders spoke for over an hour by telephone and agreed to step up counter-terrorism and military cooperation and enhance economic cooperation. But the source had no word on whether the two leaders discussed Trump's order to put a four-month hold on allowing refugees into the United States and temporarily ban travelers from Syria and six other Muslim-majority countries.
The source said Saudi Arabia would enhance its participation in the U.S.-led coalition fighting to oust Islamic State from its strongholds in Iraq and Syria.
The White House statement said the two leaders also agreed on the need to address "Iran's destabilizing regional activities." SPA also mentioned Trump and the King had similar visions on "confronting whomever seeks to destabilise security and stability in the region and interfere in the affairs of other countries," an apparent reference to Riyadh's arch-foe Iran.
Both countries share views about Iranian policies in the region, the Saudi source said, suggesting Trump agreed with Riyadh's suspicion of what it sees as Tehran's growing influence in the Arab world. Iran denies it meddles in Arab countries.From Bloomberg:
Trump spoke by phone with Saudi Arabia’s King Salman and Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed. The call with the Saudi monarch lasted more than an hour, according to a senior Saudi person who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss its details. In addition to combating terrorism and boosting economic ties, the two leaders agreed to tackle Iran’s “destabilizing regional activities” in the region, the White House said.
The remarks help shed more light on Trump’s Middle East policy by signaling he would improve ties with the Gulf Arab monarchies that felt shunned by the U.S. under the Obama administration, which focused on clinching a nuclear deal with Iran. The new U.S. president, however, stopped short of vowing to repeal the accord, saying he agreed with the Saudi king on “the importance of rigorously enforcing” it, according to the White House.
Both Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, whose capital is Abu Dhabi, are engaged in proxy confrontations with Shiite-ruled Iran in some of the Middle East’s bloodiest conflicts. The Islamic Republic was one of the seven countries included in the 90-day immigration ban on Friday, the others being Syria, Iraq, Sudan, Somalia, Yemen, and Libya.When it comes to Trump's presidency, fools rush in to criticize. The rest of us wait and see. There is always more than meets the eye.
Please read "Trump the Press," in which I skewer media experts who wrongly predicted Trump would lose the Republican nomination. "Trump the Press" is available as a paperback, and on Kindle.
It covers the nomination process only. The general election is covered in a sequel, "Trump the Establishment," which will be published in paperback on February 7.
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