x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 20 September 2017

Trump calls Saudi King Salman, urges resolution for Qatar dispute

The US president reiterated his wish to find a diplomatic resolution for the dispute with Doha

File photo from May 2017 showing (from left to right) Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sissi, Saudi King Salman, U.S. First Lady Melania Trump and President Donald Trump visiting a new Global Center for Combating Extremist Ideology, in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
File photo from May 2017 showing (from left to right) Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sissi, Saudi King Salman, U.S. First Lady Melania Trump and President Donald Trump visiting a new Global Center for Combating Extremist Ideology, in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

In a lengthy phone call that precedes Eid Al Adha celebrations this week, Donald Trump spoke with Saudi Arabia’s King Salman bin Abdulaziz on Wednesday, urging “a diplomatic resolution” to the three-month-old Qatar dispute.

Following two visits from US delegations to the Arabian Gulf in August led by retired General Anthony Zinni, and by Mr Trump’s son in law Jared Kushner last week, the US president reiterated his wishes to find a diplomatic resolution for the dispute with Doha.

According to the White House read-out, the two leaders also “discussed the need to defeat terrorism, cut off terrorist funding, and combat extremist ideology”.

To that extent Mr Trump “urged that all parties to the Qatar dispute find a diplomatic resolution that follows through on their commitments made at the Riyadh Summit, to maintain unity while fighting terrorism”.

The Iranian threat was also discussed, and King Salman offered Mr Trump his condolences “to the families who have lost loved ones”.

The US efforts through Mr Zinni’s visit have been focused on rejuvenating the Kuwaiti mediation push and bringing the different sides to the negotiating table, while extracting concessions from Doha in the area of counter-terrorism and softening its neighbors boycott.

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