Trump seeks coalition to 'stamp out extremism'

Donald Trump brings God into the negotiation room

Even as the American president pledged to work alongside Middle Eastern nations, he put the onus for combating terrorism on the region. He was addressing the heads of 50 Muslim majority countries during his first speech on foreign soil.

Trump's Saudi hosts are likely pleased there was no confrontation with Islam but critics have accused Saudi Arabia and other Arab states of not always prioritizing the fight against Sunni Islamic terrorism over battling Iran.

"Drive them out", Trump said.

- He said: "This is a battle between barbaric criminals who seek to obliterate human life, and decent people of all religions who seek to protect it". There was a George W Bush moment too when Mr Trump referred to the battle between good and evil.

What does President Trump's speech - and this visit to Riyadh - mean for US foreign policy? In his speech, Trump said the agreements will "create many hundreds of thousands of jobs in America and Saudi Arabia".

Trump was reportedly received very warmly in Riyadh, where he signed an arms deal valued at $110 billion in a move that is expected to significantly bolster the US's ties with the Arab world.

The leaders emphasized that the summit represents a historic turning point in the relations of Arab and Muslim worlds with the United States. "That means honestly confronting the crisis of Islamic extremism, and the Islamists, and Islamic terror of all kinds", he said in his speech. Yet Trump himself backed away from the term Sunday as he stood before the region's leaders. Drive them out! Drive them out of your places of worship!

Iran and Saudi Arabia have shared a relationship based on allegations, conflicts and religious competitiveness.

Reinforcing his theme of U.S. economic deals, the U.S. President told Qatar's Emir Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al-Thani they would discuss "lots of lovely military equipment because nobody makes it like the United States".

The commander-in-chief stepped away from his anti-Muslim rhetoric by calling Islam "one of the world's great faiths".

He mentioned that he would be continuing on to "Jerusalem and Bethlehem, and then to the Vatican".

The president also called for a unified front to combat Iran, which supplies weapons and training to terrorists and spreads destruction and chaos across the region.

The speech came as President Trump attempts to escape the fallout from his May 9 firing of former FBI Director James Comey amid accusations he was trying to stop a federal investigation into his campaign's ties with Russian Federation a year ago.


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