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Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 September 2018

Saudi crown prince holds talks with US officials on Israel-Palestine peace

The American delegation included presidential adviser Jared Kushner and Jason Greenblatt, the US envoy for negotiating Israel-Palestinian peace

Saudi crown prince Mohammed bin Salman, pictured here on January 25, 2017, met with the US delegation in Jeddah. Faisal Al Nasser / Reuters
Saudi crown prince Mohammed bin Salman, pictured here on January 25, 2017, met with the US delegation in Jeddah. Faisal Al Nasser / Reuters

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman met senior US officials, including presidential adviser Jared Kushner, in Jeddah and discussed efforts to bring about peace between the Israelis and Palestinians, the state Saudi Press Agency has reported.

Prince Mohammed and the US delegation also reaffirmed that cutting off all kinds of support for terrorists and extremists was a priority for both countries, Spa reported.

They said they would continue to co-ordinate on efforts in this area, including on the Global Centre for Combating Extremist Ideology in Riyadh, which Saudi Arabia's King Salman and US president Donald Trump opened together during the American leader's visit to the kingdom in May.

Also present at the Tuesday meeting were Jason Greenblatt, Mr Trump's envoy for negotiating Israel-Palestinian peace, US deputy national security adviser Dina Powell, and Saudi Arabia's new ambassador to the US, Prince Khaled bin Salman.

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"During the audience," Spa said, "the two sides confirmed commitment to reinforce bilateral relations and close co-operation, in addition to [enhancing] common interests in realising genuine and lasting peace between the Palestinians and the Israelis."

Mr Kushner, the US president's son-in-law, was charged with helping to broker a deal between Israelis and Palestinians after Mr Trump took office.

The charitable foundation of Mr Kushner's family has donated tens of thousands of dollars to a West Bank settlement, considered illegal by the international community.

The White House announced the US delegation's trip to Saudi Arabia earlier this month, saying it was part of a regional tour that would also include meetings with leaders from the UAE, Qatar, Jordan, Egypt, Israel and the Palestinian Authority. The exact itinerary has not been released, however.

The US delegation would meet regional leaders to discuss a "path to substantive Israeli-Palestinian peace talks", a White House official said at the time.

Read more: US punishes Egypt over crackdown on dissent

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