“An historic turning point” in relations with the US has been claimed by Saudi Arabia, after President Donald Trump welcomed Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to the White House.
According to a Bloomberg report, in a statement after Tuesday’s meeting a senior adviser to the Crown Prince said that “relations had undergone a period of difference of opinion. However, today’s meeting has put things on the right track, and marked a significant shift in relations, across all political, military, security and economic fields.”
Trump’s “great understanding” of US-Saudi relations shows the enthusiasm for a renewed alliance after the strains that came from the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran.
Saudi Arabia is viewed by Trump’s administration “as a crucial part of the Middle East and an important country to have a positive relationship with – even if there are irritants in the relationship,” said Simon Henderson, a fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy and director of the institute’s Gulf and Energy Policy Program. “This is at odds with the Obama administration, so they want to make that clear distinction.”
It’s reported that Salman lunched with Trump and aides at the White House on Tuesday. It was a higher-profile meeting than the originally planned photo opportunity, according to Henderson.
Salman’s visit comes after a trip he made to Washington in June following the unveiling his Saudi Vision 2030. Saudi Arabian Oil Co., known as Aramco, is also planning potentially the world’s biggest initial public offering, with as much as $100 billion in shares expected to be sold, the report said.
The Saudis said Trump and the deputy crown prince “share the same views on the gravity of the Iranian expansionist moves in the region.”