U.S. Pushes to Cool Saudi Anger Over Syria, Iran Policies

Add to Briefcase
Global Security Newswire Staff
Oct. 22, 2013, 11:02 a.m.

The Obama ad­min­is­tra­tion on Monday at­temp­ted to ad­dress grow­ing an­im­os­ity from Saudi Ar­a­bia, which re­cently aired frus­tra­tion over Wash­ing­ton’s out­reach to Ir­an and its de­fer­ral of pos­sible mil­it­ary ac­tion against Syr­ia’s gov­ern­ment, Re­u­ters re­por­ted.

At a lunch meet­ing in Par­is with Saudi For­eign Min­is­ter Saud al-Fais­al, U.S. Sec­ret­ary of State John Kerry voiced re­gret over Riy­adh’s re­jec­tion of a short-term mem­ber­ship on the U.N. Se­cur­ity Coun­cil. Rus­sia and China have sty­mied ef­forts on the body to pun­ish Syr­i­an Pres­id­ent Bashar As­sad over ac­tions in his coun­try’s civil war. 

“Sec­ret­ary Kerry con­veyed that while it is Saudi Ar­a­bia’s de­cision to make, the U.S. val­ues Saudi Ar­a­bia’s lead­er­ship in the re­gion and the in­ter­na­tion­al com­munity,” a high-level State De­part­ment in­sider said. “A seat on the UN­SC af­fords mem­ber states the op­por­tun­ity to en­gage dir­ectly.”

Saudi Ar­a­bia’s hos­til­ity to­ward Wash­ing­ton soared fur­ther over a U.S. de­cision to forgo im­me­di­ate mil­it­ary ac­tion against Dam­as­cus in an ef­fort to elim­in­ate chem­ic­al weapons held by As­sad’s forces. In ad­di­tion, Riy­adh has wor­ried it could face in­creas­ing isol­a­tion if a détente emerges between Ir­an and the United States.

Saudi in­tel­li­gence head Bandar bin Sul­tan told European en­voys his na­tion would curb ties with Wash­ing­ton over its policies to­ward Tehran and Dam­as­cus, a Saudi polit­ic­al in­sider told Re­u­ters on Tues­day.


Welcome to National Journal!

You are currently accessing National Journal from IP access. Please login to access this feature. If you have any questions, please contact your Dedicated Advisor.