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US foreign policy

White House, State Department, Pentagon dispatching senior officials to Middle East

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A group of US officials from the White House, State Department and Pentagon are heading to the Middle East this week to meet with allies in several Gulf countries, including Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, sources familiar with the trip said Wednesday.

The purpose of the trip is to hold talks to hash out differences over several matters in the region, including the Iran nuclear deal.

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Brett McGurk and Derek Chollet will head Washington’s delegation of officials, one of the sources told Al Arabiya English.

McGurk is the White House Coordinator for the Middle East and North Africa, and Chollet is a senior policy advisor to Secretary of State Antony Blinken. He is the Counselor of the State Department.

Other officials making the trip will be Acting Assistant Secretary for Near Eastern affairs Joey Hood and Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for the Middle East Dana Stroul, sources confirmed to Al Arabiya English.

Bloomberg first reported the trip.

Among the countries, the officials will visit Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Jordan and Egypt. But one source said other countries could be added.