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US: Pompeo cuts short regional tour

United States secretary of state Mike Pompeo left the Gulf on 14 January, earlier than planned due to a death in the family. During his whistle-stop tour of the region he visited five of the six Gulf Co-operation Council countries – the one missing from his agenda was Kuwait, which will now have to be rescheduled. The trip was designed to shore up support for US policy towards Iran, assert that Washington was not abandoning the region and encourage efforts to resolve the stand-off between Qatar and the GCC-3 of Bahrain, the UAE and Saudi Arabia.

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