Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah told U.S. President Barack Obama that his country would prop up Egypt's President Hosni Mubarak if the United States withdrew its aid programme, The Times said on Thursday.
Abdullah told Obama not to humiliate Mubarak, who is under pressure from protesters to quit immediately, in a telephone call on Jan. 29, the newspaper said, citing a senior source in Riyadh.
The United States has long nurtured its alliance with key ally Egypt, giving billions of dollars in aid as it seeks to influence affairs in a region whose autocratic rulers are struggling to contain social discontent.
The United States has stopped short of endorsing calls for Mubarak, 82, to leave office immediately. He said last week he would step down in September when an election is due.
On Jan. 28, the White House said the United States would review $1.5 billion in aid to Egypt. Officials later said no such review was planned currently.
Meanhwile, Obama spoke to Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah on Wednesday about the political situation in Egypt, the White House said.
"The president emphasized the importance of taking immediate steps toward an orderly transition that is meaningful, lasting, legitimate, and responsive to the aspirations of the Egyptian people," the White House said in a statement.
"The president also reaffirmed the long-term commitment of the United States to peace and security in the region."
AgenciesLast Mod: 10 Şubat 2011, 11:15