September 8, 2017 / 11:37 PM / in 2 months

Trump speaks with leaders of Saudi Arabia, UAE and Qatar

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump spoke separately on Friday with Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, United Arab Emirates Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed al-Nahyan, and Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, the White House said in a statement.

U.S. President Donald Trump speaks during a news conference at the White House in Washington, U.S. September 7, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

Trump told them that unity among Washington’s Arab partners was essential to promoting regional stability and countering the threat of Iran, the statement said.

“The president also emphasized that all countries must follow through on commitments from the Riyadh Summit to defeat terrorism, cut off funding for terrorist groups, and combat extremist ideology,” it said.

Trump also spoke to Qatar’s al-Thani on Thursday.

Trump told a news conference on Thursday that he would be willing to step in and mediate a dispute among the U.S.-allied Arab states and Qatar, and said he thought a deal could come quickly.

Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Egypt and Bahrain cut diplomatic and trade links with Qatar on June 5, suspending air and shipping routes with the world’s biggest exporter of liquefied natural gas, which is home to the region’s biggest U.S. military base.

The nations say Doha supports regional foe Iran and Islamists, charges Qatar’s leaders deny.

Reporting by Eric Beech; Editing by Eric Walsh

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