The White House Tuesday announced US President Donald Trump will meet with Abu Dhabi crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan in Washington, a week before the US President departs for his first foreign trip since he took power.
The White House said the meeting with Sheikh Mohammed, who is also Deputy Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, will take place next Monday (May 15), adding that Washington “sees the visit as an opportunity to deepen cooperation with a key partner in the Middle East”.
Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan’s visit to the White House will take place one week before Trump’s announced foreign tour to take him to Saudi Arabia, Israel and the Vatican.
The high-level diplomacy with Abu Dhabi and Riyadh underscores the reset in relations between the GCC powers and the US under President Trump, commented the UAE media The National on its website.
Despite differences over Iran and other regional challenges during former US president Barack Obama’s tenure, the UAE was regarded as the most reliable and capable Arab partner, particularly on counter-terrorism, the media said predicting “relationship with Washington is set to become even closer.”
The Trump administration is seemingly seeking to strengthen ties with key regional partners, to achieve some of its core objectives, namely crushing extremist groups in the region, mainly the Islamic State group, containing Iran and reviving the moribund Mideast peace talks between Palestinians and Israelis.
After his visits to Saudi Arabia, Israel and the Vatican, the shrines of the three monotheist religions, President Trump is expected to take part in a summit of NATO leaders in Brussels, where the defense alliance is headquartered.
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg had announced last March that the summit was scheduled for May 25 and the White House later confirmed Trump planned to attend the gathering.