Saudi Crown Prince to Visit U.K., Discuss Extremism With Theresa May

The prince's visit, which starts on March 7, will 'usher in a new era in bilateral relations', British prime minister's spokesman says

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman during the meeting with Turkey's President Erdogan in Jiddah, Saudi Arabia. July 23, 2017.
Presidency Press Service/Pool Photo via AP

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman will begin a visit to Britain on March 7 which will include talks with Prime Minister Theresa May on topics such as extremism and societal reform, May’s spokesman said on Tuesday.

 “The visit will usher in a new era in bilateral relations focused on a partnership that delivers wide-ranging benefits for both the United Kingdom and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia,” the spokesman said.

“The visit will also provide an opportunity to enhance our co-operation in tackling international challenges such as terrorism, extremism, the conflict and humanitarian crisis in Yemen and other regional issues such as Iraq and Syria.”

May discussed the visit with her cabinet earlier on Tuesday, including the much anticipated stock market listing of state oil company Saudi Aramco - potentially the biggest listing in history and the subject of a high-profile tug-of-war between Britain and the United States.

“The fact that there is a potential listing of Saudi Aramco was discussed, but in no more terms than that,” the spokesman said.

In a separate statement issued after the meeting with her cabinet, May said the crown prince’s visit - his first since his appointment in June 2017 - would allow Britain to talk “frankly and constructively” about areas of concern like Yemen and security in the Middle East.