Partnerships

Esper, Qatari Defense Minister Discuss Partnership, Regional Issues

Nov. 6, 2019 | BY Terri Moon Cronk

Defense Secretary Dr. Mark T. Esper welcomed Qatari Deputy Prime Minister and Defense Minister Khalid Al Attiyah today to the Pentagon in an enhanced honor cordon for bilateral talks between the two leaders.

Defense Secretary Dr. Mark T. Esper walks up stairs with another man.
Pentagon Stairs
Defense Secretary Dr. Mark T. Esper hosts Qatari Deputy Prime Minister and Defense Minister Khalid Al Attiyah at the Pentagon, Nov. 6, 2019.
Photo By: Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class James K. Lee, DOD
VIRIN: 191106-D-WA993-0571C

After about 30 minutes of discussions, Esper and Khalid emerged from a conference room and made remarks to a Pentagon press corps pool.

"Minister Khalid and I had a very good discussion, sharing our views on the region, reassuring him of our partnership together in terms of everything from deterring Iran to defeating ISIS," Esper said.

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The secretary said the two leaders had a "very good round of talks," and he noted that he thanked Khalid for the "incredible partnership that has resulted in their hosting our thousands of troops in their country. [The support they give us is] deeply appreciated." 

The United States and Qatar cooperate on security in the Persian Gulf region, notably by hosting the Al Udeid Air Base and U.S. Central Command Forward headquarters, and Qatar's support of NATO and U.S. military operations in the region, according to the State Department.

Qatar defense minister signs book.
Pentagon Signature
Qatari Deputy Prime Minister and Defense Minister Khalid Al Attiyah signs a guest book during a bilateral meeting at the Pentagon with Defense Secretary Dr. Mark T. Esper, in Washington, D.C., Nov. 6, 2019.
Photo By: Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class James K. Lee, DOD
VIRIN: 191106-D-WA993-0576
Defense Secretary Dr. Mark T. Esper, center, smiles in a conference room.
Bilateral Meeting
Defense Secretary Dr. Mark T. Esper, center, hosts Qatari Deputy Prime Minister and Defense Minister Khalid Al Attiyah for a bilateral meeting, at the Pentagon, Washington, D.C., Nov. 6, 2019.
Photo By: Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class James K. Lee, DOD
VIRIN: 191106-D-WA993-0578

Khalid told the media pool many items of interest were discussed, including training and performing exercises between the United States and Qatar militaries.