President Barack Obama met with King Salman of Saudi Arabia in Washington on Friday during the monarch's first trip to the United States since he acceded the throne in January, BBC News reported.
The U.S.-Saudi relationship has become strained as the U.S. president pushes forward on a nuclear agreement with Iran. Saudi Arabia has raised concerns that the agreement's plan to lift sanctions will enable Iran to support militant groups. But the meeting also focused on issues of accord between the two nations.
"Regarding the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, the two leaders underscored the enduring importance of the 2002 Arab Peace Initiative, and underlined the necessity of reaching a comprehensive, just and lasting settlement to the conflict based on two states living side-by-side in peace and security," the White House said in a joint statement from the two countries. "They also encouraged both parties to take steps to preserve and advance the two-state solution."
Obama reportedly urged King Salman to guarantee to give humanitarian organizations access to Yemen, where the Saudis head a coalition against the Houthi rebel movement, the BBC reported. In the meeting, the Saudi leader agreed to allow assistance vetted by the United Nations to visit Yemen and said that the country will work toward opening Red Sea ports to be operated under U.N. supervision.
Both leaders "underscored the importance of confronting terrorism and violent extremism," according to the White House.
"The two leaders had a positive and fruitful discussion in which they reviewed the enduring relationship between their countries," the statement said. "The relationship has grown deeper and stronger over the past seven decades in the political, economic, military, security, cultural and other spheres of mutual interest. The two leaders stressed the importance of continuing to bolster their strategic relationship for the benefit of the two governments and peoples."
Obama and Salman also discussed climate change and agreed to work together to combat global warming at the Paris negotiations when more than 190 countries will meet in December.