President Donald Trump says Saudi Arabia's king "might not be there for two weeks" without US military support, further increasing his pressure on one of America's closest Mideast allies over rising oil prices. Would you say they're rich? But I said 'King - we're protecting you - you might not be there for two weeks without us - you have to pay for your military, ' said Trump at a rally in Southaven, Mississippi, on Tuesday.
President Trump said, "we protect Saudi Arabia". We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.
Trump continued the pressure campaign at a campaign rally in MS on Tuesday, where he offered some details about the conversation.
Oil traded above $85 a barrel and near a four-year high on Wednesday, supported by expectations that USA sanctions on Iran will tighten supply and strain the ability of Saudi Arabia and other producers to pump more.
Russia and Saudi Arabia are pumping an extra million barrels of crude daily and the Russians could add another 200,000 to 300,000 barrels within a "few months", Energy Minister Alexander Novak said.
Speaking at the United Nations General Assembly in NY last month, Trump accused OPEC members of "ripping off the rest of the world".
Saudi Arabia was the U.S. leader's first stop during his first worldwide tour as president a year ago.
Trump in July tweeted without evidence that Saudi Arabia would increase its production "maybe up to 2,000,000 barrels" a day.
Oil prices edged up on Wednesday on expectations of tighter markets once U.S. sanctions target Iran's petroleum industry from next month, although a strong dollar and rising USA crude supply curbed gains. South Korea and Japan also have the U.S. to thank for stability in the Asian region, according to Trump, who previously demanded increased payments from United States allies to keep American bases in their countries. "We want them to start lowering prices and they must contribute substantially to military protection from now on".