Biden to King Abdullah II: We will always be there for Jordan

King Abdullah II visits White House, becomes the first Arab world leader to meet face-to-face with Biden.

Elad Benari ,

King Abdullah II and Joe Biden
King Abdullah II and Joe Biden
Reuters

US President Joe Biden on Monday met at the White House with King Abdullah II of Jordan.

During the meeting, Biden hailed the Jordanian monarch as a stalwart ally in a “tough neighborhood”, according to The Associated Press.

“You have always been there, and we will always be there for Jordan,” Biden said during an Oval Office appearance with Abdullah.

Biden noted that he first met Abdullah when he was a US senator and Abdullah was the crown prince.

Biden planned to stress to the King in private that the Abraham Accords, negotiated between Israel and Gulf states during the previous Trump administration, are not an “end run" on finding the way to a peace deal that includes a Palestinian state, according to a senior administration official who spoke on condition of anonymity.

During the Oval Office meeting, Abdullah praised Biden for “setting the standard” internationally in the battle against COVID-19. The US delivered 500,000 vaccines to Jordan days ahead of the king’s visit.

The king also appeared to make clear that he was looking to reset the US -Jordan relationship after four bumpy years with Trump.

“You can always count on me, my country, and many of our colleagues in the region,” he said, according to AP.

The two leaders planned to discuss the situation in Syria and a wobbly security situation in Iraq, an administration official said.

The US and Jordan are allies, and Washington has in the past delivered Black Hawk helicopters to Jordan, a move aimed at helping protect the kingdom's borders and counter the threat from Islamist terrorists.

In 2017, the United States allocated $470 million to Jordan's army and air force, the American embassy said.

This included pilot and maintenance training, spares, ground equipment, weapons, ammunition and shelters for the Black Hawks.

In 2015, Washington said it would increase overall US assistance to Jordan from $660 million to $1 billion annually for between 2015 and 2017.

King Abdullah is the first Arab world leader to meet face-to-face with Biden. The President is set to host Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi at the White House next week. Biden has also invited Prime Minister Naftali Bennett to visit later this summer.



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