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Major milestones in U.S.-Saudi relations

Saudi Arabia and the United States have enjoyed more than 80 years of bi-lateral ties, beginning with the birth of the Arab kingdom

Published: Updated:

Saudi Arabia and the United States have enjoyed more than 80 years of bilateral relations, beginning with the birth of the modern Arab kingdom in the early 1930s.

Al Arabiya News Channel has compiled some of the main milestones of one of the region’s longest and most significant alliances ahead of U.S. President Barack Obama's visit to Riyadh on Tuesday.

Saudi King Abdulaziz Al Saud United States AA
Saudi King Abdulaziz Al Saud United States AA

1932

The United States recognizes the newly unified kingdom of Saudi Arabia under King Abdulaziz Al Saud.

Saudi United States economic pact AA
Saudi United States economic pact AA

1933

The United States and Saudi Arabia sign a bi-lateral economic cooperation agreement.

United States appoints first representative to Saudi Arabia AA
United States appoints first representative to Saudi Arabia AA

1942

The United States appoints a representative to the kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

Saudi King sends angry letter to U.S. president Roosevel United States AA
Saudi King sends angry letter to U.S. president Roosevel United States AA

1943

Saudi King Abdulaziz Al Saud sends an angry letter to U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt stressing that the Jews have no rights to Palestine.

Saudi King meets Roosevelt United States AA
Saudi King meets Roosevelt United States AA

1945

Saudi King Abdulaziz Al Saud meets U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt on board aircraft carrier the USS Quincy.

Beginning of partnership between U.S. Saudi under Eisenhower AA
Beginning of partnership between U.S. Saudi under Eisenhower AA

1947

The beginning of the period of U.S.-Saudi partnership during the U.S. administration of President Dwight D. Eisenhower.

October War and oil embargo United States Saudi Arabia AA
October War and oil embargo United States Saudi Arabia AA

1973-1974

The October War, or the third Arab-Israeli conflict, and the ensuing oil embargo against the West.

Fall of Shah Islamic Republic Saudi Arabia United States AA
Fall of Shah Islamic Republic Saudi Arabia United States AA

1979

U.S.-Saudi ties improve after the fall of the shah of Iran and the establishment of the Islamic Republic under Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini.

United States Saudi Arabia Iraq First Gulf war AA
United States Saudi Arabia Iraq First Gulf war AA

1990

During the U.S. administration of George Herbert Walker Bush, the partnership between the United States and Saudi Arabia is bolstered in the first Gulf War.

September 11, 2001 New York, Saudi Arabia United States AA
September 11, 2001 New York, Saudi Arabia United States AA

2001

Tension in relations between the United States and Saudi Arabia following the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks in New York.

Saudi Arabia United States Israel Lebanon Hezbollah 2006 AA
Saudi Arabia United States Israel Lebanon Hezbollah 2006 AA

2006

Chilling of ties between Saudi Arabia and the United States over U.S. backing for the 2006 Israeli invasion of Lebanon.

Egypt United States Saudi Arabia AA
Egypt United States Saudi Arabia AA

2012

During the U.S. administration of President Barack Obama, an understanding is established between Saudi Arabia and the United States over the situation in Egypt.

Saudi Arabia Iran United States Syria AA
Saudi Arabia Iran United States Syria AA

2013

Ties between Washington and Riyadh are strained over the Iran’s nuclear program and the Syrian crisis.

Saudi Arabia King Abdullah President Barack Obama United States AA
Saudi Arabia King Abdullah President Barack Obama United States AA

2014

U.S. President Barack Obama visits Saudi Arabia to boost bi-later ties between the two countries.