updated 7:33 AM MST, Nov 17, 2017

Donald Trump’s Saudi Arabia speech: eight key points

  • Published in Middle East

Unlike Obama, who somehow couldn’t find a way to use words like “terror” or “terrorism” in his speech, Trump made the common terrorist threat facing America and the Muslim world his central point.Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said on “Fox News Sunday” that the primary goal of the visit was to confront the threat of terrorism and that human rights would improve as security and stability in the region did.Trump made no mention of the disputed travel ban, signed days after he took office, that temporarily banned immigration to the USA from seven majority Muslim countries: Iraq, Iran, Syria, Sudan, Libya, Somalia, and Yemen.

The United States and Gulf Arab countries announced an agreement to coordinate efforts against the financing of terrorist groups.Trump’s Riyadh visit kicked off his first presidential trip overseas, with Saudi Arabia the first stop on a nine-day journey through the Middle East and Europe.Hamad Al Rowaitea, 37, a telecom engineer, said he was pleased with Trump’s speech and that the US president knows that Muslims are allies in the flight against terror – not people he should blame.The GCC countries were represented by HRH Crown Prince, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior of Saudi Arabia, Prince Mohammed bin Nayef bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, while the USA side was represented by Secretary of State Rex Tillerson at the exchange of the MoU at King Abdulaziz International Conference Center in Riyadh. “Hillary must return all money from such countries!” During an October general election debate in Las Vegas, Trump went further: “It’s a criminal enterprise”, he said of the Clinton’s charitable foundation. So these are people that push gays off business – off buildings.According to the Wall Street Journal, The Women Entrepreneurs Fund is a charity that Ivanka proposed to the World Bank in April which encourages women in business by providing them with technical assistance and economic support.The President previously accused Saudi Arabia of masterminding the 9/11 attacks which killed close to 3,000 people, but made no mention of that at the summit.Trump’s ties to Saudi Arabia run deep. “If you open the documents, I think you’re going to see that it was Saudi Arabia, it wasn’t Iraq”. The junket offers Trump a brief respite from the suffocating atmosphere in Washington, where he faces a mounting campaign fueled by anonymous leaks from intelligence officials that is aimed at nothing less than his impeachment and replacement by a more supplicant Republican. “That’s insane and surreal to me”, Hamid said. “I have always heard about the splendor of your country and the kindness of your people, but words do not do justice to the grandeur of this sacred place”.”It raises the question as to whether the United States wants to lose Iran as an enemy”, said Iranian academic and author Trita Parsi in an email statement on Sunday.Trump held individual meetings with leaders of several nations, including Egypt and Qatar, before participating in a round-table with the Gulf Cooperation Council and joining Saudi King Salman in opening Riyadh’s new anti-terrorism center.”Many people are saying it was wonderful that Mrs. Obama refused to wear a scarf in Saudi Arabia, but they were insulted”.The king has lavished praise and all the trappings of a royal welcome on the new American president, welcoming in particular Trump’s pledge to be tougher on Iran than Obama was. He called Iran “a government that speaks openly of mass murder, vowing the destruction of Israel, death to America, and ruin for many leaders and nations in this room…”Melania even opted to show a little leg on day two of their trip, wearing a dress that ended just below the knees.