Remarks With Qatari Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed al-Thani

Remarks
John Kerry
Secretary of State
Treaty Room
Washington, DC
April 4, 2016


SECRETARY KERRY: Good afternoon, everybody. I’m delighted to welcome Sheikh Mohammed al-Thani, the Foreign Minister of Qatar, here to Washington. Sheikh Mohammed and I have been meeting in any number of places except Washington. And finally, we’re meeting in Washington. But since he has taken over as foreign minister, we’ve had any number of conversations on the mutual security interests of the United States and Qatar.

And the truth is that we have many shared interests, particularly right now trying to make peace in Syria, trying to secure a government in Libya, trying to see if we can stabilize the region and have an end to the conflict of Yemen, and ultimately, see peace between the Arab world, the Muslim world, and Israel. And this is something that we have also talked about.

We have a joint effort with respect to the coalition fight against Daesh. We’ve made progress. And I want to thank the Emir of Qatar and Sheikh Mohammed for their significant efforts to help us in these last days to get a government into Libya, and to join us in affirming the legitimacy of this government and the importance of people coming together for the sake of Libya to be able to provide security, and also to restore governance and diminish the current influence of Daesh in Libya.

So we have a lot to talk about in terms of our current efforts. We also have a security arrangement. We’ve been involved in training. We have a base in Qatar; we conduct significant operations out of there. We’re very grateful for the hospitality of the Emir of Qatar and of the people of Qatar.

So welcome to Washington.

FOREIGN MINISTER AL-THANI: Thank you.

SECRETARY KERRY: Glad to have you here.

FOREIGN MINISTER AL-THANI: Thank you, Mr. Secretary. I’m really delighted to be here to have my first official visit to the United States of America. Qatar and the United States has enjoyed a long strategic relationship. We have a bilateral relationship in the area of security and defense, economic relation, and education. We are really looking forward to strengthen this partnership between us and the United States. We are also here to discuss regional challenges in different issues, namely Palestine and Syria, Libya, Yemen.

We also here together to discuss the threat of the growing phenomena of terrorism, and here also to introduce the approach of combating terrorism should be holistically by defeating the act of terror and addressing the root causes of the terrorism politically, socially, and economically. Qatar and the United States will remain strong strategic partner in promoting peace and security in the region, and we are committed to this partnership.

Thank you very much. Thank you, Mr. Secretary.

SECRETARY KERRY: Thank you, Mohammed. Thank you very much.