Donald Trump US President slams Iran in first foreign speech

US President Donald Trump made a 30-minute speech on Sunday in the Saudi Arabian capital Riyadh on his first foreign visit since taking office.

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US President Donald Trump speaks during the Arabic Islamic American Summit at the King Abdulaziz Conference Center in Riyadh on May 21, 2017 play

US President Donald Trump speaks during the Arabic Islamic American Summit at the King Abdulaziz Conference Center in Riyadh on May 21, 2017

(AFP)
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US President Donald Trump made a 30-minute speech on Sunday in the Saudi Arabian capital Riyadh on his first foreign visit since taking office.

Trump's speech, preceded by a traditional Koranic reading, held Iran responsible for global extremism, urged the international community to isolate Iran and called on Arab and Muslim states to freeze channels of funding for groups including the Sunni Muslim Islamic State and Shiite Hezbollah.

Here are key highlights:

- Trump said some $400 billion in agreements signed this weekend with Saudi Arabia would create hundreds of thousands of jobs in both countries.

"This landmark agreement includes the announcement of a $110 billion Saudi-funded defence purchase. And we will be sure to help our Saudi friends to get a good deal from our great American defence companies, the greatest anywhere in the world. This agreement will help the Saudi military to take a far greater role in security and operations having to do with security."

- Trump said Muslim-majority states should take the lead in combating extremism: "A better future is only possible if your nations drive out the terrorists and drive out the extremists. Drive them out. Drive them out of your places of worship. Drive them out of your communities."

- He said: "This is a battle between barbaric criminals who seek to obliterate human life, and decent people of all religions who seek to protect it. This is a battle between good and evil."

"Of course, there is still much work to be done. That means honestly confronting the crisis of Islamic extremism and the Islamists and Islamic terror of all kinds."

- He focused on the financing of extremist groups, and announced plans for a US-Gulf agreement to "prevent the financing of terrorism called the Terrorist Financing Targeting Center, co-chaired by the United States and Saudi Arabia".

- Trump held Iran responsible for training armed groups in the wars in Syria, Yemen and Iraq, but drew a clear distinction between the "richness and culture" of the Iranian people and the government in Tehran.

- On Iran, he said: "The government that gives terrorists safe harbour, financial backing... The regime that is responsible for so much instability in that region. I am speaking of course of Iran. From Lebanon to Iraq to Yemen, Iran funds, arms and trains terrorists, militias and other extremist groups that spread destruction and chaos across the region... It is a government that speaks openly of mass murder, vowing the destruction of Israel, death to America, and ruin for many leaders and nations in this very room."

- Trump called on the international community to isolate Iran: "Until the Iranian regime is willing to be a partner for peace, all nations of conscience must work together to isolate it."

- On refugees, he praised Lebanon and Turkey for accommodating Syrians fleeing war at home: "This region should not be a place from which refugees leave but to which newcomers flock."

- Trump said Arab and Muslim countries had suffered the deadliest toll of radicalism.

- He asked: "Behind every pair of eyes is a soul that yearns for justice and years for peace. Today billions of faces are now looking at us, waiting for us to act on the great questions of our time. Will we be indifferent in the face of evil?"

- Trump concluded with the "promise that America will not seek to impose our way of life on others but to outstretch our hands."

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