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Aide Biden meets Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia in Yemen

Washington – President Joe Biden’s National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan will visit Saudi Arabia on Monday to meet with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

Sullivan will be an official of the highest Biden administration visiting Saudi Arabia. According to two senior government officials, Sullivan is expected to meet with his initials, the Crown Prince, often referred to as MBS, as well as with his brother, Deputy Defense Minister Kaled bin Salman. There is. Officials were not allowed to comment publicly and spoke on anonymous terms.

The White House released a CIA report in February showing that MBS may have approved the killing of Washington Post columnist and Saudi critic Jamal Khashoggi in a 2018 operation at the Kingdom Consulate in Istanbul. Since then, I’ve avoided most of the Crown Prince.

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But the White House has resolved that perhaps the most complex conflict in the world cannot be achieved without face-to-face with Saudi Arabia’s top executives, a senior government official said.

National Security Council spokesman Emily Horn told The Associated Press that Sullivan would travel to Riyadh on Monday and also visit Saudi Arabia’s ally in the war, the United Arab Emirates, but gave details. There wasn’t.

Sullivan was dispatched at a moment when the situation in Yemen, the poorest country in the Arab world, worsened. Fighting intensified in the major city of Malibu as Iran-backed rebels attempted to expel the Saudi government from oil-rich cities in northern Saudi Arabia.

Hans Grundberg, a new UN special rapporteur to Yemen, recently declared the country “indefinite war” and it is easy to resume negotiations to end the conflict for more than six years. Not.

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The Yemeni war began in September 2014, when the Iran-backed Houthis occupied Sana’a and began marching south to occupy the entire country. Saudi Arabia, along with the United Arab Emirates and other countries, participated in the war in March 2015 with Yemen’s internationally recognized government.

The United States sold bombs and fighters to Saudi Arabia, which later used them on strikes in Yemen, killing civilians as well. The Obama administration in 2015 provided US targeted support for Saudi Arabia’s command and control operations, which were initially intended to minimize civilian casualties from airstrikes. It didn’t, and Obama eventually cut back on the program.

Under President Donald Trump, his administration later stopped US refueling operations for Saudi Arabian jets, but target support continued.

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Biden announced a few weeks after the administration that it would end all US support for “aggressive operations in the war in Yemen, including the sale of related weapons.” However, little progress has been made in the field to resolve what the United Nations calls the worst humanitarian crisis in the world.

White House officials hope that Grundberg’s appointment will provide a new impetus and put pressure on all sides to end the conflict, according to two senior government officials.

In Sullivan, US Special Envoy Tim Lenderking of Yemen and NSC Senior Director of Brett McGurk in the Middle East are attending talks between Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin planned to travel to Saudi Arabia earlier this month while he was in the area, but was postponed because the government said it was a matter of schedule.

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The White House’s high level of impetus came after Rendell King visited Saudi Arabia and Oman to end the war. In addition, Secretary of State Antony Blinken met with the Gulf Cooperation Council counterparts on the margins of the UN General Assembly.

Sullivan’s visit to Saudi Arabia also occurs when the administration is looking for ways to revive Iran’s nuclear deal. Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates were strongly opposed to returning to a deal with Iran mediated by the Obama administration in 2015 and were abandoned by Trump in 2018.

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Iran’s new foreign minister, Hossein Amir Abdullah, spoke at the UN General Assembly on Friday, saying he would “soon” return to nuclear negotiations in Vienna. But he accused the Biden administration of sending a contradictory message, saying it wanted to rejoin the deal while imposing new sanctions on Tehran without taking “the Jota of positive action.”

Biden and his team have returned the United States to agreements signed by the United Kingdom, France, Russia, China, Germany and Iran. This is one of the top priorities of foreign policy. However, the U.S. has made limited progress in indirect negotiations, and Tehran opposes Biden’s call for a “longer and stronger” deal than the original deal, which expires at the end of 2030. ..

Copyright 2021 AP communication. all rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.

Aide Biden meets Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia in Yemen

Source link Aide Biden meets Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia in Yemen

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