File Photo: U.S. President Donald Trump shakes hands with Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in the Oval Office at the White House in Washington, U.S. March 20, 2018. (Xinhua/REUTERS)
WASHINGTON, April 9 (Xinhua) -- The White House said on Tuesday that U.S. President Donald Trump and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman Al Saud had talked over phone on issues regarding regional security, Iran and human rights.
According to a statement issued by the White House, Trump "had a productive conversation" with the Saudi crown prince over "Saudi Arabia's critical role in ensuring Middle East stability, maintaining maximum pressure against Iran, and the importance of human rights issues."
U.S. State Department said on Monday that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has ordered to ban 16 Saudi individuals from entering into the United States over their role in the death of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
Khashoggi was murdered inside the Saudi consulate in Turkey's Istanbul in October 2018. Riyadh initially denied any knowledge of the killing, but later blamed rogue agents for Khashoggi's death.
Also on Monday, the Trump administration designated Iran's Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) as a "foreign terrorist organization" (FTO). Saudi Arabia said on Tuesday that it welcomed the U.S. decision.
U.S. media quoted analysts as saying that the U.S. move would further escalate the regional confrontation.
Iran's Supreme National Security Council has responded to the U.S. designation by labelling U.S. Central Command forces in West Asia as a "terrorist group."