US President Donald Trump has said that Saudi Arabia might have to pay if it wants continuing US presence in Syria.
“We’ve almost completed that task [of defeating ISIL] and we’ll be making a determination very quickly, in coordination with others in the area, as to what we’ll do,” said Trump on Tuesday during a White House press conference with leaders from three Baltic nations.
“Saudi Arabia is very interested in our decision, and I said, ‘Well, you know, you want us to stay, maybe you’re going to have to pay’.”
Trump spoke on Monday with the King of Saudi Arabia, Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, over the phone to discuss a range of regional issues, including a peace plan between Israelis and Palestinians and opportunities to strengthen the American-Saudi strategic partnership.
But the White House statement of the call, released on Tuesday, did not mention any discussion about Saudi Arabia’s boosting funding for US military efforts in Syria.
Similarly, a White House readout of his March 20 meeting with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman made no mention of US military efforts in the region.