President Bush’s visit to Saudi Arabia first by a US president since 1994

January 14, 2008

President George W. Bush’s two-day state visit to Saudi Arabia, which begins today, is the first by a current US president since 1994.

 

The president’s visit to Saudi Arabia comes within a longstanding framework of close relations between Saudi and American leaders. Ever since King Abdulaziz Al-Saud and President Franklin D. Roosevelt met on board the USS Quincy in 1945, every Saudi King has met with the sitting American president, and the tone of their talks has echoed the frank and friendly discussions of King Abdulaziz and President Roosevelt.

President Richard M. Nixon was the first American president to pay an official visit to the Kingdom in 1974. President Jimmy Carter visited Saudi Arabia for talks with King Khalid bin Abdulaziz and then-Crown Prince Fahd bin Abdulaziz in 1978. President George H.W. Bush met with King Fahd in Riyadh in 1990 to discuss the liberation of Kuwait, and President Bill Clinton traveled to Hafr Al-Batin for talks with King Fahd in 1994.