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Arab-Islamic summit with Trump - Saudi sends invites

Mohammed Bin Salman and Donald Trump [Getty]

Date of publication: 10 May, 2017

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Saudi King Salman has invited several leaders from Arab and Muslim countries to participate in the US-Islamic-Arab summit

Saudi King Salman has invited leaders from several Arab and Muslim countries to participate in a joint US-Arab Islamic summit, scheduled to take place when US President Donald Trump visits Riyadh this month.

Saudi Arabia sent invites to Jordanian King Abdullah, Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, King Mohammed VI of Morocco, Iraqi President Fuad Masum and Tunisian President Beji Caid Essebsi.

It comes after President Donald Trump announced that his first foreign visit as US President would be to Saudi Arabia.

The US-Islamic-Arab summit is expected to cover a range of issues, including counter-terrorism and halting Iranian "expansionism" in the region.

Read also: Trump a servant of Allah, according to Saudi cleric

Trump's visit is expected to mark a reversal of US' disengagement from the Middle East, which led to strained relations between Riyadh and Washington under Barack Obama's presidency.

"[I will] begin to construct a new foundation of cooperation and support with our Muslim allies to combat extremism, terrorism and violence and to embrace a more just and hopeful future for young Muslims in their countries," the US president said during his announcement.

His visit will also likely send out a message to the Gulf power Iran that it will take Saudi Arabia and the UAE's side in any further tensions between the two blocs.

Saudi Arabia has been a key and long-term ally of the US but the decision to make Riyadh Trump's first destination as president has been described as "unorthodox".

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