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Trump Praises Saudi Arms Deals in Meeting With Crown Prince

President Donald Trump discusses arms sales to Saudi Arabia during a meeting with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman at the White House, March 20, 2018, in Washington.
Trump Praises Saudi Arms Deals in Meeting With Crown Prince
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Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman of Saudi Arabia and American President Donald Trump met at the White House in Washington on Tuesday.

The crown prince is the second highest Saudi official. He is to become the country’s next king. The two men discussed a number of issues including the increasing tensions between Iran and Saudi Arabia.

Trump criticized Iran’s treatment of the countries around it, as well as the wider world. “A lot of bad things are happening in Iran,” he said.

Trump spoke of the lessening power of the Islamic State in that part of the world.

"We have captured close to 100 percent of the territory held by ISIS. We move very rapidly, very quickly, and that's really coming to an end in that part of the world, it's coming to an end, and we'll be able to get out of certain areas that we've wanted to get out of for a long period of time.

The crown prince said that is why the two were meeting.

"That's why we are here today — to be that sure we've tackled all the opportunities and achieve it and also get rid of all the threats facing our both countries and the whole world."

Trump said he and the prince talked about terrorism and its financial support from individuals or countries.

“It will not be allowed. That would be the one thing that would end the relationship with any countries.”

He praised Saudi Arabia and other unidentified countries for efforts to end the flow of money to terrorists.

Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, The United Arab Emirates and Egypt have acted against Qatar, which they accuse providing such aid to terrorists. However, some observers have criticized Saudi Arabia for its reported support for the Salafi movement within Islam. Salafism is often linked to violent extremism.

Trump and Prince Mohammed also discussed weapons and defense equipment trade. Trump praised Saudi Arabia as "a big purchaser” of such American products. He said the Middle Eastern country is, in his words, "bringing hundreds of billions of dollars back into the United States." He said the business is also responsible for 40,000 American jobs.

The 32-year-old Saudi prince is also meeting in Washington with the secretaries of commerce, defense and treasury. He will also talk with congressional leaders and the chief of the Central Intelligence Agency and congressional leaders.

Prince Mohammed has help direct a series of social reforms in Saudi Arabia. These include women’s right to drive cars and attend football games. The prince plans such reforms in an effort to make the country and its economy more modern.

But his plan to appeal to foreign investors could face difficulties. In November, he supervised the arrests of more than 150 Saudi princes, ministers, military officials and businessmen in Riyadh. The prince said it was an anti-corruption effort. Others argued it was a way for him to remove possible political opponents.

Saudi Arabia is also facing criticism for its part in the war in Yemen. U.S.-supported Saudi forces there are fighting Iran-supported Houthi rebels. The conflict has killed thousands of civilians. It has also caused a humanitarian disaster in Yemen, one of the world's poorest countries.

I’m Caty Weaver.

VOANews reported this story. Caty Weaver adapted it for Learning English. Hai Do was the editor.


Words in This Story

rapidly - adv. quickly​

tackle - v. to deal with (something difficult)​

opportunity -​ n. an amount of time or a situation in which something can be do​; a chance

get rid of -​ expression to remove permanently

allow -​ v. to permit​