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Trump touts $12.5B defense purchases by Saudi Arabia

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Trump touts $12.5B defense purchases by Saudi Arabia

Meeting with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in Washington, U.S. President Donald Trump hailed Saudi Arabia's $12.5 billion purchase of planes, frigates, artillery and other military equipment.

In his remarks before holding bilateral talks with Prince Mohammed, Trump said the deals will create thousands of American jobs.

"Saudi Arabia is a very wealthy nation, and they're going to give the United States some of that wealth, hopefully, in the form of jobs, in the form of the purchase of the finest military equipment anywhere in the world," Trump said, adding that the purchases will lead to 40,000 jobs in the U.S.

Hinting at more possible purchases, Salman said Saudi Arabia's previous pledge for $200 billion worth of investments in the U.S. would end up at $400 billion planned for the next 10 years, with more than 55% implemented in just a year.

"So this is signal that there is a lot of things could be tackled in the close future, and more opportunities," he said.

Trump also praised Saudi Arabia for "working very hard" in blocking funding for terrorism in the Middle East, which was among the issues that he was expected to discuss with Salman, along with the Iran nuclear deal.

"The Iran deal is coming up. It's probably another month or so, and you're going to see what I do," Trump said. "But Iran has not been treating that part of the world, or the world itself, appropriately. A lot of bad things are happening in Iran."