Biden, Saudi king discuss energy supplies, Iran and Yemen

US President Joe Biden (left) briefed King Salman (right) on international talks regarding Iran's nuclear programme. PHOTOS: AFP

WASHINGTON (REUTERS) - US President Joe Biden and King Salman of Saudi Arabia discussed energy supplies and developments in the Middle East, including in Iran and Yemen, during a phone call on Wednesday (Feb 9).

"The two leaders committed to ensuring the stability of global energy supplies", the White House said in a statement.

Salman also spoke about maintaining balance and stability in the oil markets and emphasised on the need to maintain the Opec+ agreement, state news agency SPA said.

Opec+ agreed last week to stick to moderate rises in its oil output with the group struggling to meet existing targets and wary of responding to calls on its strained capacity for more crude from top consumers to cap surging prices.

Separately, Biden repeated the commitment of the United States to support Saudi Arabia in defending itself against attacks by Yemen's Iran-aligned Houthi group, the White House said.

Biden also briefed Salman on international talks to "re-establish constraints on Iran's nuclear programme," the White House said.

The conflict in Yemen is largely seen as a proxy war between Saudi Arabia and Iran. The Houthis, who ousted the government from the capital, Sanaa, in late 2014, say they are fighting a corrupt system and foreign aggression.

Salman told Biden that Saudi Arabia wanted there to be a "political resolution" in Yemen, SPA said.

Biden's last call with Salman was reported about a year ago around the time of the release of a US assessment that said Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the king's son, approved an operation to capture or kill murdered journalist Jamal Khashoggi in 2018.

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