The second day of meetings with Middle Eastern leaders was jam-packed, with the President meeting with King of Bahrain, Amir of Qatar, President of Egypt, Amir of Kuwait, Deputy Prime Minister of Oman. The POTUS will also partake in several meetings later in the day, including but not limited to the Arab American Islamic Summit.
At 9:05 AM, local time, the POTUS met with Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa, the King of Bahrain. Trump began the meeting expressing his honor and appreciation for the meeting, followed by an assurance that “there won’t be the strain with this administration”. He also added that the two countries had many things in common.
The only remaining point of discourse before the pool was ushered out was the King of Bahrain saying that the two nations had a long history of relations: “based on a very good foundation of mutual understanding and strategy that we all have worked with, led to a great stability in the region.”
Of those present included Foreign Minister Khalid Bin Ahmad Bin Mohamed Al Khalifa, Minister of the Royal Court, Khalid Bin Ahmad, and Crown Prince Nasser Bin Hamad.
Next, the POTUS met with the Amir of Qatar, Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani. The press spray was brief, but the POTUS did share a few comments proclaiming the U.S.’s past and prospective future positive relations.
He spoke particularly of how the purchase “of beautiful military equipment” from the U.S. is of great benefit to the country, since “nobody makes it like the United States. The POTUS relayed the mutual benefits of such deals, citing an increase in jobs and employment in the U.S. as well as increased security in countries like Qatar, which are surrounded by fairly unstable nations and face a very imminent threat from terrorism.
He then told the Amir that it was “an honour to be with him”, which was followed by a shaking of hands, but the Amir did not speak.
POTUS refers to the president of Egypt with the amicable phrase “sisi”, which translates to “my friend”, and begins the meeting by praising the U.S.’s positive relationship with Egypt.
“We’ve really been through a lot together positively,” POTUS said. He said they are having “Very very important talks” and said that in Egypt “Safety seems to be very strong.”
He then thanked Sisi for his assistance with releasing an American aid worker, Aya, who had been detained in Egypt for three years and was released upon a request from the POTUS. Sisi then spoke, through a translator, and spoke of the “strategic nature” of U.S.-Egypt relations. He also invited the POTUS to Egypt, to which the POTUS agreed, indicating that he will be visiting the Middle East again soon.
Sisi also said of the POTUS: “You are a unique personality that is capable of doing the impossible”, to which Trump responded, “I agree!”
On a side note, the POTUS did not respond or make any comments to questions on the recent Iranian election.
At 11:45 AM, the POTUS, and King Salman met once again for a photo, walking to the photo room together after having had exchanged MOUs.
Some excerpts from President Trump’s comments throughout the day of meetings are copied below:
“Our goal is a coalition of nations who share the aim of stamping out extremism and providing our children a hopeful future that does honor to God. “
“America is a sovereign nation and our first priority is always the safety and security of our citizens. We are not here to lecture—we are not here to tell other people how to live, what to do, who to be, or how to worship. Instead, we are here to offer partnership – based on shared interests and values – to pursue a better future for us all.”
“…But the nations of the Middle East cannot wait for American power to crush this enemy for them. The nations of the Middle East will have to decide what kind of future they want for themselves, for their countries, and for their children.”
The overlaying themes of helping establish peace, economic stability, and fostering positive international relations were expressed through each meeting, setting a positive precedent for President Trump’s capacities as a leader overseas.