The United States said that it is working to reset its relationship with Saudi Arabia, ruling out the option of estrangement, and will focus on the Kingdom's behavior in the future, in light of the results of the intelligence report on the assassination of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, while Washington stressed that it is working to end the war in Yemen, and support Saudi Arabia's ability to counter Houthi attacks.
State Department spokesman Ned Price added in a press conference Monday that future arms sales to Saudi Arabia will be evaluated based on US interests and values, and urged Riyadh to disband the Royal Guard's Rapid Intervention Force.
The spokesman stressed that his country is seeking to ensure that the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi is not repeated in his country's consulate in Istanbul in October 2018, and added that the United States will enhance in its reports information on violations against human rights defenders and journalists.
Price pointed out that "it is important for US interests that Saudi Arabia continue its reform process." The US official added that his country would not reveal the identity of 76 Saudis who are subject to the new visa restrictions, and the US official said that Washington had identified a former senior Saudi intelligence official linked to Khashoggi's killing.
And about the extent of the intention to impose sanctions on those involved in Khashoggi's killing, the US official said, "We do not impose sanctions on the leaders of countries with whom we disagree or have problems with them."
He stated that his country "urges Saudi Arabia to take additional steps to lift the travel ban on the released activists."
He said that Saudi Arabia's lifting of the blockade on Qatar is a step in the right direction, "but we hope for more steps."
He highlighted that the counterpart of the US President in Saudi Arabia is King Salman, and "we will deal on this basis."
The US State Department spokesman explained that President Joe Biden's administration has sent a clear message to Saudi Arabia, defining the features of relations, saying that it aims to reach a responsible partnership with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
On the Yemeni issue, Price said that the US envoy to Yemen is working closely in the region in the hope of ending the conflict, announcing that Biden stressed the need to stop offensive weapons sales to operations there.
He indicated that the political track in Yemen should support the military track, explaining at the same time that his country wants to ensure Saudi Arabia's ability to defend itself against external attacks, and the US State Department spokesman stated that his country is considering taking additional measures to hold the Houthi leadership accountable.
US State Department Spokesman: Washington wants to ensure Saudi Arabia's ability to protect itself from Houthi attacks (French)
In a related context, US Defense Department spokesman John Kirby said that Saudi Arabia is a strategic partner for his country in the region, and that his country will continue to fulfill its obligations to assist the Kingdom against attacks on its borders with Yemen.
Kirby confirmed in a press conference that Washington is working with the international community to find a political solution to the conflict in Yemen, and to limit the assistance that the Houthis receive from Iran.
The Saudi Press Agency said yesterday, Monday, that a military projectile launched by the Houthi group landed in the city of Jizan, southeast of the Kingdom, and a Saudi Civil Defense spokesman explained that the fall of the projectile resulted in moderate injuries to civilians as a result of flying shrapnel, and they were transported to the hospital, as well as causing material damage.