Moderator: Greetings to everyone from the U.S. European Media Hub in Brussels. I would like to welcome our participants dialing in from across Europe and thank you for waiting for the few extra minutes today for today’s discussion.
Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo met yesterday with Omani Sultan Qaboos bin Sa’id in Muscat. The Secretary commended the Sultan for Oman’s unique capacity to create opportunities for dialogue on difficult issues at challenging times, including by separately hosting both Palestinian Authority President Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu in Oman in October.
In continued defiance of the international community and UN Security Council Resolution 2231, the Iranian regime fired off a space launch vehicle today. Such vehicles incorporate technologies that are virtually identical and interchangeable with those used in ballistic missiles, including intercontinental ballistic missiles. Today’s launch furthers Iran’s ability to eventually build such a weapon.
SECRETARY POMPEO: So good afternoon, everyone. I had a brief but very productive trip. I had a chance to meet with the Saudi foreign minister, with King Salman, and then, ultimately, with Crown Prince Salman; discussed the issues that relate to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the United States as they pertain to what I was trying to accomplish on this trip, right.
FOREIGN MINISTER AL THANI: (Via interpreter) In the name of God, most gracious, most compassionate, at the outset I would like to thank His Excellency the Secretary of State Mr. Mike Pompeo for visiting Doha, and I would like to welcome him on his first visit as a secretary of state. We are looking forward towards further such visits.
The governments of the State of Qatar and the United States held the second Strategic Dialogue in Doha, Qatar on January 13, 2019. U.S. Secretary of State Michael Pompeo co-chaired the opening session with Qatari Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani.
Secretary Michael R. Pompeo met today with Qatari Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani in Doha. The Secretary thanked the Amir for Qatar’s longtime friendship and strategic partnership with the United States. The Secretary and the Amir discussed progress on several regional issues, including combatting terror, achieving lasting peace in Afghanistan and Syria, and on the Middle East Strategic Alliance.
FOREIGN MINISTER AL THANI: (Via interpreter, in progress) that link our two countries in order to reinforce a deep partnership and cooperation in all aspects economic and also military relations, which are the most important pillars of such a relationship and that effectively contribute to the reinforcement of international and regional stability.
Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo met today with Saudi Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Adel al-Jubeir and Saudi Ambassador to the United States Prince Khalid bin Salman bin Abdulaziz in Riyadh. The Secretary and the Minister discussed critical regional issues, including Iran, Syria, Yemen, Lebanon, Libya, and Afghanistan. The Secretary and the Minister agreed on the importance of continuing to support political progress in order to achieve peace in Yemen.
SECRETARY POMPEO: Well, let me start. We’re now at the second – so look, we’re on the second stop in our swing through the Gulf states. Lots of good friends here are working with us on the campaign to defeat ISIS, our efforts to get Iran to behave like a normal nation.