Jared Kushner Secretly Visited Saudi Arabia to Discuss Middle East Peace Initiative

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File photo: Jared Kushner in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia in May of 2017
File photo: Jared Kushner in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia in May of 2017Credit: Evan Vucci/AP

WASHINGTON - Jared Kushner, U.S. President Donald Trump's senior adviser and son-in-law, visited Saudi Arabia in recent days and discussed the Trump administration's Middle East peace initiative with the Kingdom's leadership.

Kushner's trip, which was not publicly announced, was first reported by Politico on Sunday. A senior White House official said that Kushner visited the country with Trump's special envoy to the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, Jason Greenblatt, and Deputy National Security Adviser Dina Powell. The same group of senior advisers visited Saudi Arabia and other countries in the region earlier this summer.

The White House official emphasized that peace between Israel and the Palestinians remains a top priority for President Trump, and that such a peace agreement could have a positive impact on the entire Middle East.

The official added that Greenblatt also recently met with officials from Jordan, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates, but that "while these regional talks will play an important role, the President reaffirms that peace between Israelis and Palestinians can only be negotiated directly between the two parties," adding that "the United States will continue working closely with the parties to make progress toward that goal." 

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