The US president is currently in Saudi Arabia on his first foreign trip as president to sign an arms deal. Meanwhile in Yemen, the people there are protesting this visit. What does the president’s visit to Saudi Arabia mean for their country?
From Washington Post:
A deal of $110 billion in arms sales was made to “support Saudi Arabia’s defense needs” including naval ships and tanks as well as THAAD missile (anti-ballistic missile) defense systems.
This deal expand’s on the Obama administration’s military assistance to Saudi Arabia, which had slowed due to the bombing of civilians in Yemen.
“It was a great day,” Trump said. He cited “tremendous investments in the United States…and jobs, jobs, jobs.”
The $55 billion in agreements announced separately from the behemoth arms deal includes a $6 billion deal for Lockheed Martin to build 150 Blackhawk helicopters in Saudi Arabia, helping the kingdom develop its defense industry, which is a key component of the country’s 2030 Vision plan. US defense company Raytheon will also establish a branch in Saudi Arabia and General Dynamics agreed “to localize design, engineering, manufacturing, and support of armored combat vehicles,” the government announced in a press release.
- GE $15 billion to work on projects such as improving Saudi Arabia’s power grid and energy capabilities.
- $110 million Dow Chemical manufacturing plant.
- $22 billion deal between Saudi and American oil and gas companies.
From PBS News Hour:
Protesters gathered in Yemen’s capital Sana’a to protest the US president’s visit to Saudi Arabia and the arms deal that was in the works to be signed during the visit. PBS News Hour reports on the protest and also the situation in Yemen and points out that the people of Yemen while protesting the US president, do not view the people of the US as their enemies.
People had come out to protest Trump’s arrival in Riyadh, the Saudi capital. I don’t know how to estimate crowd size, but it was certainly large. And they’re particularly upset that President Trump arrived in Riyadh to sign a $110 billion arms deal. These arms will go to the Saudis and they will use these arms in their war in Yemen. The country’s been through two years of war and the people feel broken.