Jubeir: Optimistic after contact with Trump cabinet

Jubeir emphasized how the relationship was multi-faceted and encompassed several areas including strategic, political, military and economic fields. (AFP)

Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir said on Tuesday that Saudi-US relations are strong in all areas and that his country would respect the decision of the American people. He also said he looks forward and “optimistic” on cooperating with the US President Donald Trump’s administration.

Jubeir emphasized how the relationship was multi-faceted and encompassed several areas including strategic, political, military and economic fields.

“The positions that President Trump has articulated are ones that we are completely in accordance with: restoring America’s presence in the world is something we – and all of the American – welcome because the lack of an American engagement leads to a vacuum,” Jubeir said during a conference on Tuesday.

Key among the agreements between Riyadh and Washington is the fight against the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) and the containment of Iran’s unstable activities in the region.

“The President Trump has stated as his objective the defeat of Daesh. We and every civilized country in the world support this goal. And we look forward to working with the Administration on realizing this objective,” Jubeir said.

“He has spoken about containing Iran and limiting its ability to cause mischief and making sure that Iran abide to the letter with the Nuclear agreement that was signed. Exactly this is our position. And we look forward to working with them in this area,” the Saudi foreign minister added.

Full text of Jubeir’s statement below:

Let me begin by saying that the US- Saudi relationship is a very long relationship and a very strategic relationship. It is very multi-faceted. We have very strong ties and have had for decades in the area of security, in the military field, in the political field, in the economic field in the investment field, and the people-people relationship. Half of the Saudi young men and women who are studying abroad in the government of scholarships and their numbers is roughly around 200 thousands- half of them are studying in the United States. Their experience there has been phenomenal. It has been positive. They have acquired skills and knowledge that they will bring back to their country in order to further and advance our nation.

I believe that the US people have spoken when they elected President Trump as their President. And we all have to respect the will of the American people. We look forward to working with Trump’s administration to further the bilateral relationship and to further and to deal positively with the challenges, numerous challenges whether we are talking about Syria or Iraq or Yemen, Libya, fighting terrorism, dealing with the global financial issues, the energy.

The positions that President Trump has articulated are ones that we are completely in accordance with: restoring America’s presence in the world is something we- and all of the American- welcome Because the lack of an American engagement leads to a vacuum. And vacuum in the international system will be filled with evil forces. And we all have to work double down and fight and push back against those evil forces at great cost. So an America that is engaged, is an America that plays a positive role in the world, something we welcome.

The President Trump has stated as his objective the defeat of Daesh. We and every civilized country in the world support this goal. And we look forward to working with the Administration on realizing this objective.

He has spoken about containing Iran and limiting its ability to cause mischief and making sure that Iran abide to the letter with the Nuclear agreement that was signed. Exactly this is our position. And we look forward to working with them in this area.

He has made his objective to rebuild traditional alliances or alliance with traditional American allies. And this is something we also welcome.

So we look forward to working with the Trump Administration. And we are very positive about the future of the Saudi-Us relationships. And we look forward as I said to working with Trump Administration.

When you look at the individuals that President Trump has appointed or nominated for key positions whether we are talking about General Mattis for the Defense Department, General Kelly for Homeland Security, Mike Pompeo for CIA, Rex Tillerson at the State Department. When we are talking about Mr. Wilbur Ross at the Commerce Department, Steve Mnuchin at the Treasury Department. These are very very impressive individuals they are highly capable. They are highly experienced and they have a very realistic and a wise view of the world and of America’s in it.

So once again I say we are very optimistic about the Trump Administration. And working closely with Administration to deal with the many challenges, not only in our region, but in the world.

Let me also wrap up one item to the last question that you asked. We have also—I say what I say about our positive outlook. Because we have had contact with the Trump Administration to review on these issues. And we feel very strongly.

In terms of the statements you mentioned which belongs to General Flynn. General Flynn is an individual we know from his time Defense Intelligence Agency and from his time as Central Command. He is an American patriot. He is a man concerned about the security of the United States. And he is a man who believes in working very closely with American Allies, including the United States. So again I personally look forward to working with General Flynn and with all our colleagues in the American Administration. I have no doubts whatsoever that the—that our ability to overcome the challenges will be tremendously enhanced the closer we work together.

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Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 14:00 - GMT 11:00
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