In Saudi Arabia, Tillerson hints at possible talks with Iran
- Author: Zachary Reyes May 21, 2017,
May 21, 2017, 13:23
"What I would hope, is that Rouhani... use that (new) term to begin a process of dismantling Iran's network of terrorism, dismantling its financing of the terrorist network, dismantling the manning and the logistics and everything that they provide to these destabilising forces that exist in this region", Tillerson said in Riyadh.
US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said on Saturday that arms agreements worth $110 billion signed with Saudi Arabia aim to help the kingdom deal with "malign Iranian influence".
However, the official Saudi news agency SPA quoted a statement by Saudi-led coalition later Friday that it had intercepted and destroyed a Houthi missile in the southern Saudi province of Ar Rayn, about 200 km west of Riyadh.
Tillerson, who is accompanying U.S. President Donald Trump on his first visit overseas to Saudi Arabia, said that deals worth $350 billion have been signed between U.S. companies and Saudi Arabia during the president's first day in Riyadh.
Yemen's force has shot down an F15 fighter jet that was taking part in the bombing campaign of Saudi-led coalition.
Saudi Arabia said it shot down a ballistic missile fired by Yemeni rebels southwest of the capital Riyadh late on Friday, ahead of US President Donald Trump's arrival.
Saudi Arabia, a staunch adversary of Iran, deeply opposed the nuclear accord forged between former president Barack Obama and world powers with Tehran.
Trump arrived in Riyadh on Saturday, making Saudi Arabia the first country he visited as the President of the United States.
USA technology and engineering conglomerate GE said on Saturday, May 20 it had signed $15 billion of business deals with Saudi Arabia as part of the kingdom's drive to diversify its economy beyond oil, Reuters says.
Tillerson said Trump's focus on his visit to Saudi Arabia was pushing back on any threats posed by Iran.