President Obama wrapped up meetings with leaders from six Persian Gulf ally nations at Camp David Thursday. According to White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest, the general objective of the retreat was to “deepen and strengthen their security relationship.”
More specifically, officials from the Gulf Cooperation Council, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, U.A.E., Kuwait, Oman, and Bahrain, are concerned about the growing threat of Iran, ISIS, and the Syrian civil war in their region. To that end, these Arab allies of the West sought to hash out America’s Middle Eastern policy with Mr. Obama.
On Iranian nuclear negotiations, many moderate Middle Eastern nations are concerned that a deal which lifts economic sanctions in exchange for a draw-down of nuclear development will only embolden Iran to push the envelope more.
Speaking to reporters earlier Thursday, President Obama said that officials at the meeting agreed that a deal to stop Iran from developing nuclear capabilities is mutually beneficial for all involved, and would coordinate an effort to neutralize Iranian aggression.
On Wednesday night, the White House hosted allied leaders for dinner.
According to sources, the Obama administration will offer increased military aid to the region, possibly in Syria and Yemen, and coordinate the delivery of weapon systems with allied nations. However, the White House has already rejected a formal defense treaty previously requested by the Council.
[Washington Post] [AP] [Photo courtesy Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP]