US President Donald Trump gave a warm White House welcome on Tuesday to the Qatari emir amid an ongoing blockade imposed on the Gulf nation by its Arab neighbours and rising tensions with Iran.
Trump clasped arms with Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani and called him a friend while recognising the nation’s huge armed forces partnership with the US and billions of greenbacks in purchases from American companies.
“It be a tall honour to work with a friend,” Trump stated.
“They are investing very heavily in our nation,” he stated. “They’re growing hundreds jobs. They’re shopping for tremendous amounts of armed forces equipment, at the side of planes.”
Five commercial agreements had been signed. Qatar Airways is shopping for five Boeing 777 freighters and mountainous-cabin plane from Gulfstream Aerospace and plans to make use of Fashioned Electric Co jet engines to energy its Boeing plane.
The White House also stated the Qatari defence ministry will select a missile defence map from Raytheon. As well, Chevron Phillips Chemical and Qatar Petroleum relish agreed to collectively create a $8bn petrochemical plant on the US Gulf Soar.
At a Monday night dinner for the Qatari delegation, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin praised the emir for his lend a hand in combatting “terrorist” financing.
The worth tags on the totally different deals – at the side of some which relish been previously introduced – weren’t disclosed, however those conversant in the transactions stated they totalled tens of billions of greenbacks.
“That is a president for whom the procuring and selling relationship is the vogue he judges a nation’s relationship in a whole lot of ways. He seems to be on the balance-sheet,” Al Jazeera’s James Bays, reporting from Washington DC, stated.
“That is the vogue Qatar has been rather skillful in its diplomacy in contrast with two years ago when the blockade started when it looked relish no lower than some figures in Trump administration had been giving a inexperienced light to that blockade,” he stated.
US allies – Bahrain, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) – imposed a land, sea and air blockade on Qatar in June 2017, claiming it supported extremist teams in the gap. Qatar has strongly denied these allegations.
“Now which you would possibly possibly presumably also honest relish the emir being feted in Washington at a time when those finishing up the blockade are indisputably going through tons of world criticism for the continuing battle in Yemen and the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
“For Qatar and the emir, it’s miles a 2nd where I guess he’s in a stronger space with the US than any time since president Trump took space of job.”
The emir’s search the advice of with comes at a time when Trump is going through vital choices in the Middle East.
Iran, which is chaffing below US financial sanctions, has begun enriching uranium in violation of a 2015 nuclear deal.
The deal has been unraveling since Trump pulled the US out of the settlement closing twelve months. Discovering ways to counter Iran shall be a precedence when Secretary of Notify Mike Pompeo meets with the emir on Wednesday.
Qatar, which has judicious one of many sphere’s very most life like per capita incomes as a result of its pure gasoline reserves, has worked to open up totally different avenues of earnings to offset the impact of the boycott.
“Now we relish tons of investments in the US,” Sheikh Tamim stated. “We belief the financial system here. We halt plenty on infrastructure and we’re planning on doing extra investment,” he stated.
The four Arab international locations aligned against Qatar relish also pointed to Doha’s shut relationship with Iran. Qatar restored elephantine diplomatic ties to Iran amid the dispute.
Majed al-Ansari, a professor at Qatar College, suggested Al Jazeera that the US wished to care for pushing for a decision to the Gulf dispute without from now on escalation in the gap.
“What the White House would carry to halt now is now not to salvage tangled in the GCC crisis and give every participant in the game the moral quantity of passion in the gap,” he stated, referring to the Gulf Cooperation Council, whose members consist of Qatar, Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Bahrain.
Qatar is home to the forward headquarters of the US armed forces’s Central Squawk. The sprawling Al Udeid Air Irascible is home to a couple of 10,000 American troops.
Last month, virtually a dozen Air Force F-22 stealth fighters had been deployed there in step with intelligence stories of heightened Iranian threats against American forces in the gap.
“They built judicious one of many tall armed forces bases I’d squawk wherever on this planet,” Trump stated. “It be factual been expanded with runways and all the pieces else.”
A joint train issued after meeting affirmed the dedication to switch forward with the excessive-stage strategic cooperation between the 2 international locations.
“The United States and Qatar fragment a history of friendship in step with frequent efforts and mutual recognize.
“For decades, the bonds between our tall international locations relish bolstered, reinforcing an increasingly extra shut strategic and defence relationship keen about countering threats to our safety, peace, and prosperity.”