Pentagon Press Secretary John Kirby provided the following readout:
On February 18, Secretary of Defense Lloyd J.
Austin III spoke by phone with Saudi Minister of Defense His Royal Highness Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to reaffirm the strategic defense partnership between the United States and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
The Secretary condemned the recent Houthi cross-border attacks on Saudi Arabia and expressed his commitment to assisting Saudi Arabia in the defense of its borders.
Secretary Austin reiterated recent changes in U.S.
policy toward the Saudi-led Coalition in Yemen, discussed the importance of ending the war, and thanked the Crown Prince for Saudi Arabia’s commitment to a political settlement.
He underscored Saudi Arabia’s role as a pillar of the regional security architecture in the Middle East and the importance of sharing the responsibility of regional security and stability.
Secretary Austin noted US and Saudi shared commitment to countering Iran’s destabilizing activities and defeating violent extremist organizations in the region.