x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 19 January 2018

Tillerson and Saudi foreign minister Jubeir meet in Washington

The two men discussed range of issues including the wars in Yemen and Syria as well as counterterrorism cooperation

US secretary of state Rex Tillerson with Saudi Arabia foreign minister Adel Al Jubeir at the US State Department in Washington. Pablo Martinez Monsivais / AP
US secretary of state Rex Tillerson with Saudi Arabia foreign minister Adel Al Jubeir at the US State Department in Washington. Pablo Martinez Monsivais / AP

The US State Department said that secretary of state Rex Tillerson met Saudi counterpart Adel Jubeir in Washington on Friday.

The department's spokeswoman Heather Nauert tweeted that the meeting discussed range of issues including the wars in Yemen and Syria as well as counter-terrorism cooperation.

“Secretary Tillerson and #SaudiArabia’s Foreign Minister@adelaljubeir had important discussions on issues in the region that we’re working cooperatively, including #Syria,#Yemen, stabilising the entire region, and our#counterterrorism partnership” Ms Nauert said.

Mr Tillerson welcomed Mr Jubeir before emphasising that “many, many important issues in the region to discuss where we’re working cooperatively on – both in Syria, with the Yemen conflict, stabilising the entire region, and very broadly counterterrorism, where we have a great partnership under way.”

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Syria is one issue where Saudi-US-Russian coordination has increased in preparation for a meeting in Sochi to explore a political roadmap that would end the conflict.

The National has also learned that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman is mulling a visit to Washington in the next two months, and Mr Jubeir’s meetings could be to address preparations for such visit.

Jordanian Foreign minister Ayman Safadi is also expected to visit Washington next week, where his talks will focus on Syria, bilateral ties and the peace process. Meanwhile US vice president Mike Pence will make his first trip to the Middle East later next week where he will visit Egypt, Jordan and Israel.