Saudi in talks with US for Arab front against Iran: Jubeir
طهران/ خبرفوري// Saudi Arabia Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir says the kingdom is in talks with the United States about a new security alliance of Arab countries specifically aimed at countering Iran.
Speaking at a press briefing in Riyadh Sunday, the Saudi FM said the new pact would be similar in style to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and would seek to protect the Middle East from “external aggression.”
“Talks are continuing between the United States and the (Persian) Gulf states around this question and ideas are being drawn up,” he said at the press call, which came after the annual Persian Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) summit.
“The aim is to achieve security arrangements in the Middle East that can protect the region from external aggression… and strengthen relations between the United States and the countries of the region,” Jubeir added.
The Saudi diplomat said the agreement, which is going to feature Egypt as a member as well, would be called the Middle East Strategic Alliance, or MESA.
The remarks confirmed months-long media reports about a joint push between Riyadh and Washington for the establishment of a so-called “Arab NATO” that would also serve Israeli interests in the Middle East region.
US Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Persian Gulf Affairs Tim Lenderking on Sunday toured the region to convince Arab leaders to commit to the plan.