American Secretary of Defense James Mattis met with Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan of the United Arab Emirates at the White House on Monday to formally finalize a new mutual defense agreement between the two nations.
This new agreement is set to replace a previous one established in 1994, and is intended to better “reflect the broad range of military-to-military cooperation that the UAE and U.S. enjoy today,” spokesman Christopher Sherwood said.
According to the Pentagon, the agreement was actually signed by both nations on May 8th, but was not disclosed until the conclusion of Mattis’ meeting with the crown prince.
Mattis and Al Nahyan, who serves as the deputy supreme commander of the United Arab Emirates Armed Forces, discussed a variety of shared security threats between the two nations, including instability in Yemen and Libya and the ongoing fight against ISIS in Iraq and Syria. According to a statement released by the Department of Defense, the two also worked to reaffirm areas of mutual interest and shared values, such as “freedom of navigation, territorial sovereignty for the states of the Arabian Peninsula, and the fight against extremism.”