U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson steps off his plane as he arrives to the presidential hangar in Mexico City, Mexico February 1, 2018. REUTERS/Henry Romero
CAIRO - 11 February 2018: U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson arrived in Cairo on Sunday to kick off his Middle East tour that will include Egypt, Jordan, Turkey, Lebanon and Kuwait to discuss the Syrian crisis and Middle East peace.
The two-day visit is set to include meeting with President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi on Monday, where they will discuss the peace process, ways of enhancing U.S.-Egyptian relations, the recent efforts to counter terrorism, as well as the regional and international issues of mutual concern.
In his visit to Jordan, Tillerson will meet with Jordan’s King Abdullah II and Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman Al-Safadi to discuss the Syrian crisis, the statement added, saying, “The secretary will underscore the enduring strength of the U.S.-Jordanian relationship, engage with the Jordanian leadership on the conclusion of a new memorandum of understanding on bilateral assistance, and discuss key regional issues, such as the ongoing crisis in Syria and Jordan’s support for Middle East peace.”
Turkey is one of his stops, where he will tackle bilateral ties and regional issues with senior Turkish officials. In Beirut, he will meet with Lebanese President Michel Aoun, Prime Minister Saad Hariri and Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri. “The secretary’s visit will emphasize U.S. support for the Lebanese people and the Lebanese Armed Forces,” the statement read.
Tillerson will also visit Kuwait, where he will attend the Ministerial Meeting of the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS, which is due to be held on February 13, and he will participate in the Kuwait International Conference for the Reconstruction of Iraq on February 12-14.
According to the statement, this is the third time that Tillerson participates in the ministerial meeting since it was established by the 74 members on September 11, 2014 and the first since ISIS has been defeated in Iraq in December 2017.