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Esper Welcomes Bahrain's Crown Prince to Pentagon

Sept. 17, 2019 | BY David Vergun

Defense Secretary Dr. Mark T. Esper hosted an enhanced honor cordon and meeting welcoming Crown Prince Salman bin Hamad Al-Khalifa of Bahrain to the Pentagon.

Esper said Bahrain has always been a steadfast partner to the United States, in large part because of the two nations' close security relationship.

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"Your nation has stepped up for decades to play a part in helping to deter conflict in one of the most important parts of the world," he said. "We are grateful for the kingdom's long-standing willingness to host the [U.S.] 5th Fleet, a partnership that began in 1995. This is indicative of the strong ties between our countries."

A group of people smile.
Medical Briefing
A Bahrain Defense Force paramedic listens to a speaker during a medical subject matter expert exchange at the Crown Prince Center of Training and Medical Research in Bahrain, April 17, 2019.
Photo By: Army Sgt. Connie Jones
VIRIN: 190417-A-TQ005-016A
A small boat sails near city.
Bahrain Security
Sailors assigned to Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit operate a rigid-hull inflatable boat in the Persian Gulf off the coast of Manama, Bahrain, Aug. 14, 2019.
Photo By: Navy Petty Officer 3rd Class Dan Willey
VIRIN: 190814-N-DQ500-1017

Esper also mentioned the extension of the bilateral defense cooperation agreement between Bahrain and the United States. As a result of this agreement, Bahrain has played a critical role in sustaining continued U.S. naval operations in the Persian Gulf.

The defense secretary then turned to the topic of Iran. He said that recent events have shown that Iran continues to violate international norms and instead has chosen to promote instability and danger throughout the region.

Two men stand at a doorway to the Pentagon.
Honor Cordon
Defense Secretary Dr. Mark T. Esper welcomes Crown Prince Salman bin Hamad Al-Khalifa of Bahrain to the Pentagon for a meeting, Sept. 17, 2019.
Photo By: Lisa Ferdinando, DOD
VIRIN: 190917-D-BN624-0001

"We greatly appreciate you working together with us and other friends of the rule of law and security to deter further provocative acts by Iran," he said. "Matters at hand are regrettable and are of great concern to all of us in the world — those, at least, who value the international world order of peace, security and stability."

Al-Khalifa said he was looking forward to today's meeting to discuss ways to strengthen defense cooperation between Bahrain and the United States.