Pompeo arrives in Saudi Arabia for talks with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman

Foreign Minister Faisal bin Farhan and US Ambassador to Saudi Arabia's John Abizaid greet Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and his wife Susan as they arrive at Neom Bay Airport in Saudi Arabia. (AP)
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Updated 23 November 2020

Pompeo arrives in Saudi Arabia for talks with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman

  • Pompeo embarked on a regional tour, likely to be his last as US secretary of state
  • He touted Trump’s MidEast ‘maximum pressure’ strategy that focused on Iran

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman met with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in Neom on Sunday to discuss bilateral relations, areas of cooperation and ways to enhance them.
They also discussed regional and international developments, Saudi Press Agency reported.
The meeting was also attended by Saudi foreign minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan and US Ambassador to the Kingdom, John Abizaid.
Pompeo arrived in Saudi Arabia earlier to discuss the strong bilateral security and economic partnership between the United States, the US State Department said.

Both sides would also discuss progress made under the U.S-Saudi Arabia Strategic Dialogue held last month in Washington.
The State Department added that the US and Saudi Arabia support global economic growth and stable energy markets as two of the world’s largest suppliers of oil and gas.
Washington recognizes Saudi Arabia’s progress toward transforming its economy under the Kingdom’s Vision 2030.
The US secretary of state embarked on a regional tour earlier this week, which included Turkey, Israel the UAE and Qatar, where he attended peace talks between the Afghan government and Taliban negotiators in Doha.
Saudi Arabia is currently hosting the two-day 15th G20 Summit in Riyadh, which is being held virtually for the first time, and chaired by King Salman.
Among the top priorities on his agenda for the visit, most likely his last as secretary of state ahead of a handover to the next president Joe Bidden, is maintaining pressure on Iran.
“Our policies don’t change. Our duty doesn’t change. My responsibilities don’t change,” Pompeo said. “I still have an obligation — every hour, every minute — to defend the American people and to keep them foremost in our efforts, and we’ll do that. We’ll do that to the very last minute.”

Pompeo said Donald Trump’s Middle East strategy had focused on Iran as “the central threat inside the region” and maintained a maximum pressure campaign that curbed Iran’s ability to support militias in Iraq, Lebanon and Syria.
“It’ll be our policy until our time is complete,” he added.
Pompeo traveled to the Kingdom from the UAE, where he met Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed to discuss the emirates’ decision to normalize ties with Israel.
They also discussed security cooperation and countering Iran’s malign influence in the region, as well as that of China,” the US State Department said.
(With AP)


Tadawul index records highest close since July 2019 on Sunday

Updated 9 min 37 sec ago

Tadawul index records highest close since July 2019 on Sunday

  • Total trading reached $3.17 billion

Saudi Arabia’s benchmark Tadawul All Share Index (TASI) rose 0.2 percent, or 15 points, to end at 8,709 points on Sunday, the highest closing since July 2019.

Total trading reached SAR 11.9 billion ($3.17 billion), with the advance-decline ratio at 146:44.

SPIMACO rose 5.5 percent to SAR 43.05. The company signed a non-binding memorandum of understanding with German biopharmaceutical firm, CureVac, to provide COVID-19 vaccine in the Kingdom.

Electrical Industries closed 5.6 percent higher at SAR 24.26, as the firm completed the final phase of share buyback for SAR 7.2 million.

Naseej went limit up to close at SAR 33.

Oil giant Saudi Aramco fell 0.4 percent to SAR 35.75, while banking major Al Rajhi slipped 0.3 percent to SAR 74.

Blue chip SABIC edged down 0.3 percent to SAR 96.50.

Alandulas was the top decliner, shedding nearly 2 percent to SAR 21.08.

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