Assistant Secretary of State for Political-Military Affairs R. Clarke Cooper travels to the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, and Israel November 14-23 to meet with key U.S. regional partners on expanding security cooperation and defense trade that enhances our shared security.
In the United Arab Emirates November 15-16, Assistant Secretary Cooper will hold consultations with senior civilian and military officials in Abu Dhabi on deepening our security partnership and proposed sales of advanced defensive capabilities to deter Iran and its regional proxies. Assistant Secretary Cooper will discuss the changing regional security landscape and increased opportunities for cooperation in the wake of the United Arab Emirate’s historic decision to normalize diplomatic relations with Israel under the Abraham Accords. The United Arab Emirates is a vital U.S. security partner who stood shoulder-to-shoulder with us in Afghanistan and Iraq; is an active and capable partner in the worldwide fight against Al-Qaida and its regional affiliates; and hosts nearly 4,000 U.S. forces.
In Saudi Arabia November 17-18, Assistant Secretary Cooper will meet with senior government officials in Riyadh to discuss security cooperation and defense trade. Saudi Arabia is a strong U.S. partner in security and counterterrorism, as well as a leading purchaser of U.S. defense equipment, including more than $126.6 billion in active government-to-government sales cases under the Foreign Military Sales (FMS) system and an additional $8.2 billion in defense articles to Saudi Arabia via the Direct Commercial Sales (DCS) process, both managed by the Bureau of Political-Military Affairs.
In Bahrain November 19-20, Assistant Secretary Cooper will congratulate its senior civilian and military officials for normalizing diplomatic relations with Israel under the Abraham Accords, and discuss expanding partnerships in maritime security and defense trade. Bahrain hosts the U.S. Navy’s Fifth Fleet and its security cooperation with the United States strengthens interoperability for regional security and counterterrorism cooperation, boosts its maritime defenses, and improves its counter-terrorism capabilities in a manner that respects the human rights of its citizens.
In Israel November 20-22, Assistant Secretary Cooper will meet with senior civilian and military officials to discuss ongoing, robust U.S.-Israel security cooperation and Israel’s expanded network of regional partnerships following the historic Abraham Accords. America’s commitment to Israel’s security is ironclad. Under our 10-year Memorandum of Understanding, Israel is the world’s single-largest recipient of U.S. security assistance, and our governments cooperate closely in joint military exercises, military research, and weapons development.