Blinken doubles down on US support for Saudi Arabia

The US is committed to its “longstanding strategic partnership” with Saudi Arabia, Secretary of State Antony Blinken told his Saudi counterpart in a phone call on Thursday.

Blinken and Prince Faisal bin Farhan also discussed Afghanistan and other regional issues, including the Iran-backed Houthi attacks on Saudi Arabia.

“The Secretary expressed the United States’ strong commitment to its longstanding strategic partnership with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and to helping Saudi Arabia defend its people and territory,” the State Department said in a readout of the call.

Yemen’s Houthis fired a bomb-laden drone at the Abha airport in Saudi Arabia earlier this week, leaving at least eight civilians injured.
The international community was quick to denounce the attack and condemn the Houthi aggression.

State Department Spokesman Ned Price also hit out at the Houthis on Thursday. “The fact is that our partner, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, does face a threat from Yemen. We are standing with our partner,” Price told reporters during the daily press briefing.

Asked if there was any change in the kind of US support for the Saudis, Price said: “We obviously have robust security and counterterrorism cooperation.”

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