|Adel A. al-Jubeir
عادل بن أحمد الجبير
|Saudi Arabia Ambassador to United States|
27 February 2007
|Preceded by||Turki bin Faisal Al Saud|
February 1, 1962 |
Al Majma'ah, Saudi Arabia
|Alma mater||University of North Texas,
Adel A. al-Jubeir (Arabic: عادل بن أحمد الجبير; born 1 February 1962) is the Saudi Arabian Ambassador to the United States, and a former foreign policy advisor to King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz of Saudi Arabia. He is a well-known representative of the Saudi kingdom in the West, particularly the United States. Al-Jubeir presented his credentials to President George W. Bush on 27 February 2007 in the White House.
Al-Jubeir was born in Al Majma'ah (Riyadh Province), Saudi Arabia, and attended schools in the Kingdom, Germany, Yemen, Lebanon and the U.S. He obtained a B.A. summa cum laude in political science and economics from the University of North Texas in 1982, and an M.A. in international relations from Georgetown University in 1984. In 2006, he received an Honorary Doctorate in Humane Letters from the University of North Texas.
In 1987, al-Jubeir was appointed into the Saudi Diplomatic Service and posted to the Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia in Washington, DC, where he served as Special Assistant to then Ambassador Prince Bandar bin Sultan. It was in 1991 during the first Gulf War when al-Jubeir first appeared to the world as a spokesman for the Saudi government. In 1990-91, he was part of the Saudi team that established the Joint Information Bureau at Dhahran, a city in Saudi Arabia's Eastern Province, during Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm. He was a member of the GCC delegation to the Madrid Peace Conference in October 1991, and a member of the Saudi delegation to the Multilateral Arms Control Talks in Washington, DC in 1992. In December 1992, he was dispatched with the Saudi Armed Forces to Somalia as part of Operation Restore Hope.
Al-Jubeir has been a member of the Saudi Arabian delegation to the United Nations General Assembly, and was a visiting diplomatic fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York, 1994-95. During his tenure at the Saudi Embassy, al-Jubeir developed strong ties on Capitol Hill, in the Administration, the media and with major think tanks in Washington. In 2000, al-Jubeir became Director of the Saudi Information and Congressional Affairs Office at the Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia in Washington, DC. In late 2000, he was named Foreign Affairs Advisor in the Crown Prince’s Court. In August 2005, King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz appointed al-Jubeir to the position of Advisor at the Royal Court.
Following the September 11 attacks, al-Jubeir returned to the United States to address the many questions and criticisms that faced the Kingdom at that time. Al-Jubeir became the face of Saudi Arabia through hundreds of television appearances as well as other media interviews and visited more than 25 cities around the country where he gave talks to World Affairs Councils, universities, civic organizations, business institutions and other interested groups about current events and the state of Saudi/U.S. relations.
On 21 December 2006, Saudi Arabia informed the United States Department of State of its intention to appoint al-Jubeir as the new ambassador to Washington. Ambassador al-Jubeir replaced Turki bin Faisal Al Saud, who served as ambassador for 15 months. Al-Jubeir was appointed by royal decree as Saudi Ambassador to the United States of America with ministerial rank at the Foreign Ministry on 29 January 2007.
As ambassador, al-Jubeir has focused on strengthening the bilateral relationship by building ties across government departments in both countries. Another key area of focus has been the welfare of Saudi citizens living in the United States. Other issues of focus include counter-terrorism, regional peace and security, bilateral trade, cultural exchange and interfaith dialogue. Prior to becoming ambassador, he was instrumental in establishing and maintaining the U.S.-Saudi Strategic Dialogue, which was initiated by King Abdullah and President Bush as a means to institutionalize relations between the two nations and deepen coordination on strategic, political and economic issues.
Ambassador al-Jubeir travels frequently to the Kingdom for consultations with the King and other senior Saudi officials. He is regularly seen with King Abdullah in meetings with world leaders and has accompanied King Abdullah on many state visits including China, India, Pakistan, and Malaysia in 2006 and Germany, Italy, Turkey, and Egypt in 2007.
In November 2007, Ambassador al-Jubeir was part of King Abdullah’s delegation on visits to Italy, where King Abduallah met with Pope Benedict XVI, first meeting between a Saudi monarch and a Pope. In July 2008, King Abdullah convened an interfaith conference in Madrid, Spain, bringing together major figures from Islam, Judaism, Christianity, Hinduism, Buddhism, Shintoism and Confucianism to reinforce the common values shared by their respective faiths.
In November 2007, al-Jubeir joined Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Saud al-Faisal for the meeting of the Arab League Foreign Ministers in Cairo in preparation for the Annapolis Peace Conference. He was also a member of the Saudi delegation to the Annapolis Peace Conference in November 2007.
During Ambassador al-Jubeir’s tenure, Saudi Arabia and the U.S. have signed a series of bilateral agreements in key areas including civil nuclear cooperation, enhanced security arrangements, reciprocal visa policies, health and medical services, science and technology cooperation, among others. The two countries have established two Joint Task Forces— one to combat terrorists, another to combat terror financing. Experts from both governments work side-by-side, sharing real-time information about terror networks. In addition, the two countries have extensive cooperation between their two militaries.
In October 2010, Saudi intelligence provided key information to American officials that foiled an attempted terrorist plot involving parcel bombs heading to the United States that originated in Yemen. The bombs were found and defused before reaching their intended targets.
Al-Jubeir has enhanced the embassy’s focus on its ties with the United States Congress through extensive meetings and briefings with members of Congress and staff as well as facilitating visits to the Kingdom. In the spring of 2007, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi visited the Kingdom with a Congressional delegation, the first visit by a sitting Speaker of the House.
In addition, the tempo of visits by senior U.S. officials have increased substantially during his tenure as ambassador, including two visits by President Bush, multiple visits by Vice President Dick Cheney and a visit by President Obama in 2009. Other visits have included National Security Advisors James L. Jones and Thomas Donilon; Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton; Secretaries of Treasury Henry Paulson and Timothy Geithner; Secretary of Energy Steven Chu; Secretary of Defense Robert Gates; CENTCOM Commanders General David Petraeus and James Mattis; Homeland Security Advisor John O. Brennan and Special Envoys George J. Mitchell, Dennis Ross, Richard Holbrooke and a large number of sub cabinet officials.
Visits to the United States by Senior Saudi officials since 2007 have included two Heads of State visits by King Abdullah in November 2008 and July 2010. In addition, there were visits by Foreign Minister Prince Saud Al-Faisal, Director of General Intelligence Prince Muqrin bin Abdul Aziz, Assistant Minister of Interior for Security Affairs Prince Muhammed bin Naif, Oil Minister Ali Al-Naimi, Finance Minister Ibrahim Abdulaziz Al-Assaf, Governor of the Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency Mohammed al-Jasser and Minister of Commerce Abdullah Alireza.
In addition to visits by government officials, there have been numerous trade delegations to and from both countries as well as academic exchanges. These visits reflect the breadth and depth of the relationship between the United States and Saudi Arabia.
Ambassador al-Jubeir served as the Escorting Minister for Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama on their respective visits to the Kingdom.
On 3 June 2009, U.S. President Barack Obama traveled to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia on a two-day official visit to Saudi Arabia. President Obama was received by King Abdullah, Second Deputy Prime Minister Prince Nayef bin Abdulaziz and Ambassador al-Jubeir at King Khalid International Airport.
During his visit to Saudi Arabia, President Obama stated that he chose Saudi Arabia as the first stop on his Middle East tour because the Kingdom is a key ally and the cradle of Islam. The President and King Abdullah met and held extensive bilateral talks at the King’s ranch in al-Janadriyah on the outskirts of Riyadh. During their discussions, the two leaders focused on regional and international developments and Saudi-U.S. bilateral relations. King Abdullah presented President Obama with the King Abdulaziz Medal, the Kingdom’s highest award bestowed to heads of state and world leaders.
On 29 June 2010, Ambassador al-Jubeir attended a meeting between King Abdullah and U.S. President Barack Obama in Washington, D.C. The two held on talks on a wide range of issues of mutual interest and common concern.
On 8 January 2011, Ambassador al-Jubeir attended a meeting in New York between King Abdullah and U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and former U.S. President Bill Clinton as well as meetings between the King and French President Nicolas Sarkozy and United Nations General Secretary Ban Ki-moon.
Ambassador al-Jubeir served as a member of the Kingdom’s United Nations General Assembly delegation in 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010. Furthermore, Ambassador al-Jubeir attended G20 summit meetings in Washington, D.C. in 2008, London in 2009 and Toronto in 2010.
In 2007, he headed the Kingdom’s delegation to the Law of the Seas Conference at the United Nations. In 2009, he met with UN General Secretary Ban Ki-moon to discuss the ongoing situation in Darfur and in July 2011, he led the Saudi delegation to the U.N. High Level Meeting on Youth.
Developments during tenure as ambassador
In fewer than five years, the Saudi-U.S. relationship has grown substantially in the fields of security, economic relations and cultural exchange. Saudi students enrolled at colleges and universities are at an all-time high, reaching more than 45,000 students as of June 2011, up from about 8,000 in December 2006. Improved visa policies by both countries have also led to record numbers of visitors, with each country issuing nearly 70,000 visas in 2010 (NCUSAR Policymakers Conference). As a result of an agreement reached in May 2008, the two countries agreed to issue five-year multiple-entry visas to citizens of both countries.
The U.S. Ambassador to Saudi Arabia, James B. Smith stated, “Offering new types of visas to foreign scientists and experts, as well as for student exchanges in scientific fields, opens doors for the people of Saudi Arabia to learn from other countries and for the world to learn from and about Saudi Arabia.”
Investments between the two countries are also at record numbers. The United States is the number one source of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in Saudi Arabia with $8.1 billion in 2009, a 56.5 percent increase from 2008. In 2010, Alcoa and Saudi Ma’aden signed a contract worth approximately $15 billion to build the world’s largest aluminum refinery and smelter complex in the Kingdom. In 2011, Saudi Aramco and Dow Chemical Company approved the formation of a joint venture to build and operate a world-scale, fully integrated chemical complex in Jubail Industrial City, valued at $20 billion. In 2008, SABIC and ExxonMobil began conducting a detailed study for a new Elastomers project at their petrochemical joint ventures, Kemya and Yanpet. Once completed, the project will have a total investment of approximately $5 billion. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is also a large investor in the U.S. economy.
Ongoing arms sales between the countries are a testament to the longstanding Saudi military partnership with the United States. In 2008, the Kingdom secured sophisticated weapon systems, which include the Joint Direct Attack Munitions.
In October 2010, the Obama Administration notified Congress of a proposed arms sale to Saudi Arabia up to an estimated $60 billion – the largest U.S arms sale in history. The sale is meant to further align the Saudi military relationship with the United States and allow the Kingdom to better protect its security and oil infrastructure, which “is critical to our economic interests,” said Andrew Shapiro, assistant secretary for political and military affairs, at a State Department news conference. The agreement will include the sale of 84 F-15 fighter aircraft, almost 200 helicopters and the upgrading of 70 older-model F-15s.
For both arms transfers, Ambassador al-Jubeir led an effort which brought together support from industry, labor, Congress and the Administration to ensure that the agreements were approved without objection.
2011 assassination plot
On 11 October 2011, US authorities accused elements within the Iranian government of attempting to orchestrate his assassination.
In December 2002, al-Jubeir was chosen as Person of the Week by Time. He has lectured at universities and academic institutions in the U.S. and appears frequently in the media.
In 2009, he received the Ambassador of the Year award from the National U.S.-Arab Chamber of Commerce for his contributions to Saudi-U.S. relations. In 2011, he was presented with the Diplomatic Achievement Award from the National Council on U.S.-Arab Relations.
Adel al Jubeir is married with four children.
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|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Adel al-Jubeir.|
- Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia in Washington: Biography of the ambassador
- Appearances on C-SPAN
- Adel al-Jubeir collected news and commentary at The Jerusalem Post
- The Saudi’s Red Carpet, The Washington Diplomat, 13 September 2007.
- Royal Order Appoints Jubeir as Ambassador to USA, Saudi Press Agency (SPA), 29 January 2007.
- Saudi Arabia Set to Name Jubeir as Ambassador, The Washington Post, 21 December 2006.
- The Saudi/U.S. Relationship with Foreign Affairs Advisor Adel Al-Jubeir, “Viewpoint” Washingtonpost.com, 13 July 2005.
- Saudis Reform Charities as Antiterror Measure, CNN.com, 2 June 2004.
- Person of the Week: Adel Al-Jubeir, Time, 5 December 2002.
- Peace Prosperity: An Interview with Saudi Ambassador Al-Jubeir, Diplomatic Connection, August 2009.