US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin spoke with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman on Wednesday. The news agency Reuters reported this information. The Pentagon later said in a statement that talks between Mohammed bin Salman and Lloyd Austin had begun.
Pentagon spokesman John Kerby said in a statement that Lloyd Austin and Mohammed bin Salman discussed regional security, ending the war in Yemen, and the ongoing bilateral efforts to improve Saudi defense.
The statement added that the talks emphasized the United States’ commitment to protecting Saudi territory and its people.
Iran-backed Houthi rebels overthrow Saudi-backed government in Yemen. The Saudi-led coalition launched a military operation in Yemen in 2015. Houthi rebels are attacking Saudi Arabia from Yemen. The Houthis say they are fighting the country’s corrupt system as well as foreign aggression.
Lloyd Austin mentioned Saudi Arabia’s recent success in thwarting attacks by Houthi rebels in talks with Mohammed bin Salman. At the same time, Lloyd Austin thanked Mohammed bin Salman for working with the US special envoy to end the war in Yemen.
More than 100,000 people have been killed in fighting in Yemen. Most of the dead were civilians. Millions of people have been displaced by the war. Yemen is on the brink of famine due to war and blockade. There is a humanitarian crisis going on. The United Nations has described the current situation in Yemen as the worst humanitarian crisis in the world.