President Barack Obama will assure Saudi King Salman of the US commitment to help counter any Iranian security threat, White House officials said on Wednesday, despite concern among Gulf allies that a new nuclear deal could empower Tehran in the region. Obama, hosting Salman on Friday on the king’s first US visit since ascending to the throne in January, will seek to allay the fears of
Washington’s most important Arab partner that the lifting of sanctions on Iran would allow it to act in destabilizing ways. The White House talks will come less than two weeks before a possible US congressional vote on the nuclear deal between six world powers and Iran, Riyadh’s regional rival. The Obama administration wants to use the visit to shore up relations with Saudi Arabia after a period of tensions.