Iran won’t be allowed to have nukes, US assures Gulf states

The crown prince with US President Barack Obama at Camp David.

The crown prince with US President Barack Obama at Camp David.

President Barack Obama has pledged America’s “ironclad commitment” to Gulf nations to help protect their security, pointedly mentioning the potential use of military force and offering assurances that a potential nuclear agreement with Iran would not leave them more vulnerable.

At the summit-closing news conference, Obama said Gulf leaders hadn’t been asked to “sign on the bottom line” to approve work in process. They agreed, he said, “that a comprehensive, verifiable solution that fully addresses the regional and international concerns about Iran’s nuclear program is in the security interests of the international community, including our GCC partners.”

Foreign Minister Adel Al-Jubeir said Arab leaders were “assured that the objective is to deny Iran the ability to obtain a nuclear weapon” and that all pathways to such a weapon would be cut off.

He added that it was too early to know if a final nuclear agreement would be acceptable, saying, “We don’t know if the Iranians will accept the terms they need to accept.”

Addressing reporters after a Camp David summit with six Gulf leaders, Obama said: “As we’ve declared in our joint statement, the United States is prepared to work jointly with GCC member states to deter and confront an external threat to any GCC state’s territorial integrity that is inconsistent with the UN charter.”

He added: “Let me underscore, the United States keeps our commitments.”

The president said the US believes Iran’s focus would be on shoring up an economy that has struggled under the sanctions pressure.

Obama promised a “concrete series of steps” from the one-day summit.

Following Obama’s remarks, the Emir of Qatar, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani, said that his country and other GCC states hope that the Iran agreement would be a stabilizing factor in the region. He added that the talks were fruitful and candid in all regional issues.

“In the event of such aggression or the threat of such aggression, the United States stands ready to work with our GCC partners to determine urgently what action may be appropriate, using the means at our collective disposal, including the potential use of military force, for the defense of our GCC partners,” the joint statement added.

On the sidelines of the summit, a White House spokesperson said that the White House was open to the idea of granting its Gulf Cooperation Council partners major non-NATO ally status.


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