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King Salman hails Iraq’s gains against terrorism at council launch

King Salman of Saudi Arabia and the Iraqi Prime Minister Haider Al-Abadi inaugurated the first meeting between the Saudi-Iraq Coordination Council (SICC) on Sunday. The meeting was also attended by US diplomat Rex Tillerson.

King Salman said: “We are facing in our region serious challenges in the form of extremism, terrorism, as well as attempts to destabilize our countries … These attempts require our full attention. I look forward to the meetings of the SICC to move toward a broader and more welcoming horizon.”

He also congratulated Iraq on their successful moves to curb terrorism. King Salman said, “We congratulate our brothers on the achievements made in terms of eradicating and defeating terrorism … We reaffirm our support for the unity and stability of our brotherly country of Iraq.” He thanked Rex Tillerson for attending, “which reflects the attention being paid by President Donald Trump and the US administration to the common interests between the US, the Kingdom and the Republic of Iraq.”

The Iraqi Prime Minister expressed his happiness with “the growing cordial relations between the two brotherly countries.” He stressed the importance of focusing on combatting terrorism. “We believe that our security, economy and interest must be formulated by joint action among the countries of the region.”

The meeting was also attended by a large number of high-ranking Saudi, American and Iraqi officials, including the Minister of Foreign Affairs Adel Al-Jubeir; Minister of State and Cabinet Member Musaed bin Mohammed Al-Aiban; Minister of State and Cabinet Member Ibrahim Al-Assaf; Minister of Commerce and Investment Majed bin Abdullah Al-Qassabi; Minister of Environment, Water and Agriculture Abdulrahman Al-Fadhli; and Minister of Energy, Industry and Mineral Resources Khalid Al-Falih. From the Iraqi side, the meeting was attended by Iraqi Minister of Foreign Affairs Ibrahim Al-Jaafari; Minister of Defense Irfan Al-Hayali; Minister of Planning Salman Al-Jumaili; Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research Abdul Razzaq Al-Issa; Minister of Labor and Industry Mohammad Shiaa Al-Sudani; Minister of Agriculture Falah Hassan Zaidan; Minister of Transport Kazem Fanjan; and Minister of Culture Faryad Rawanduzi.

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