US diplomat Blinken arrives in Saudi Arabia


US Secretary of State Antony Blinken arrived in Saudi Arabia on Monday, his first stop in a wider tour of the Middle East as Washington tries to advance negotiations on a normalisation deal between the Kingdom and Israel as well as make progress on talks for the governance of post-war Gaza.

The top US diplomat’s fifth trip to the region since Hamas’ October 7 attack comes at a perilous moment and amid retaliatory US strikes across Syria, Iraq and Yemen in response to a drone strike last week in Jordan that killed three American troops and wounded dozens.

Blinken is also set to visit Egypt, Qatar and Israel later this week and push to advance the Egyptian and Qatari mediated conversations with Hamas to achieve a hostage deal.

In Riyadh, Blinken was expected to meet with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, as well as his Saudi counterpart, foreign minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud.

More from International