Defense Secretary William Perry wrapped up a six-day visit to Persian Gulf states today after winning agreement for positioning enough weapons and other equipment to support a U.S. armored division.
Perry, after a morning of meetings in the Al-Rayyan Palace, said in a statement that he was pleased with the results of his talks in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Qatar.
"The countries I visited are willing to work with the United States as we follow a policy . . . to prevent aggression by Iraq and Iran," Perry said. "The personal relationships I have established with area leaders will lead to extended access to bases and ports and more effective crises response."
A senior Pentagon official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said Perry's meetings with Sheik Khalifa bin Hamad Al-Thani, Qatar's emir, resulted in an agreement to speed up plans to store enough supplies to support about 5,000 troops in battle.
"They agreed to that totally," the senior Pentagon official said. In fact, the Qatar leaders were so sympathetic to the U.S. request that they volunteered the possibility of accepting placement of supplies for a second brigade.