RIYADHA:(APS)May 20, 2017-United States President Donald Trump has landed in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia on his first trip abroad since taking office. He is reportedly also expected to have a meeting with Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, who is expected to leave the Kingdom tomorrow, on the sidelines.
According to a AP that Trump’s visit is aimed at building stronger partnerships to combat terrorism in the region. He also hopes to move past the controversies engulfing his administration.
Part of his visit entails attending the US-Arab-Islamic Summit, where he hopes to lay the foundations for an “Arab Nato force” to push back Iran’s growing influence in the Middle East as well as combat terrorism.
Trump, accompanied by his wife Melania and White House aides, flew to Riyadh overnight on Air Force One. He’s the only American president to make Saudi Arabia, or any majority Muslim country, his first stop overseas as president. The scheduling choice is designed in part to show respect to the region after months of harsh anti-Muslim campaign rhetoric.
Received by King Salman, the president began his visit with a coffee ceremony with the monarch of Saudi Arabia.
He’ll participate later in an arrival ceremony at the Saudi Royal Court and a luncheon banquet, followed by a bilateral meeting with the king, a signing ceremony and a meeting with the Deputy Crown Prince, Prince Mohammad Bin Salman.
On Saturday night, he’ll attend a royal banquet at Murabba Palace followed by a tour of the National Museum.
As part of his nine-day, multi-country tour, Trump will also travel to Israel, have an audience with Pope Francis at the Vatican, and attend the NATO summit in Brussels and the Group of 7 meeting in Sicily.