Fw: Travel pool report #1, 5/14/15 -- Obama greets GCC leaders at Camp David

From: Davis, Julie [mailto:xxx@email.com]
Sent: Thursday, May 14, 2015 12:25 PM
To: Barnes, Desiree N.; Velz, Peter
Subject: Travel pool report #1, 5/14/15 -- Obama greets GCC leaders at Camp David

Travel Pool Report #1, May 14, 2015
Camp David
President Obama greets Gulf Cooperation Council leaders at start of summit – no news

Under crystalline skies on a cool, sunny day, your pool was led at 11:43 a.m. through a side door into a conference room in Laurel lodge, a green building with wooden shingled roof. President Obama was seated at a long, rectangular wooden table with Gulf leaders and Cabinet members. All had papers in front of them, glasses of water and china coffee cups. Most of the Gulf leaders wore robes and red and white head coverings, although the Omanis were in brown robes with multicolored head-wraps. There were low flower arrangements on the table. The room was wood-paneled, and lined up on the wall to Obama’s left were several flags.

There were no formal comments. As the pool entered, the president was quietly chatting with the leader to his right, who, according to a seating chart provided by the White House, was the amir of Kuwait, Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmed Al-Jaber Al-Sabah (full list of those around the table below). During the five minutes your pool was present one wave of American journalists, one wave of foreign journalists and a wave of official photographers took turns entering the room to take in the scene. Obama prodded them to hurry up and exit the room after each wave, “All right guys, thank you… Come on guys… Last one? O.K.” And at one point, he joked that one group “must be all from Qatar,” prompting laughter around the table.

As we were escorted out at 11:47 a.m., POTUS could be heard to say, “O.K., now we can do some work. Again, I want to welcome all of you…”

Here is a list of those seated on either side of the table, beginning with POTUS, who was in the middle of one side, and going clockwise:

Secretary of State John Kerry
Sheikh Tameem bin Hamad Al Thani of Qatar
Dr. Khalid bin Mohamed Al Attiyah of Qatar
Secretary of the Treasury Jacob J. Lew
(other side of table)
CIA Director John Brennan
Crown Prince Salman bin Hamad Al-Khalifa of Bahrain
Shaikh bin Khalid Ahmed Al-Khalifa of Bahrain
Sheikh Tahnoon bin Zayed Al Nahyan of UAE
Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan of UAE
Crown Prince Mohammed bin Nayef bin Abdulaziz Al Saud Saudi
Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud Saudi
Dr. Abdel Aziz Al Uwaisheq of the GCC
Dr. Abdul Latif bin Rashid Alzayani of the GCC
Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz
(back on Obama’s side of table)
Secretary of Defense Ash Carter
Yousuf bin Alawi bin Abdullah of Oman
Sayyid Fahad bin Mahmood Al Said of Oman
Sheikh Sabah Al-Khaled Al-Sabah of Kuwait
Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmed Al-Jaber Al-Sabah of Kuwait

There were more officials seated in chairs against the wall, not identified by the White House. American officials present for the session, per the White House, were: Susan Rice, National Security Advisor, Lisa Monaco, Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism, Avril Haines, Deputy National Security Advisor, Ben Rhodes, Deputy National Security Advisor for Strategic Communications, Robert Malley, White House Coordinator for Middle East, North Africa and the Gulf Region


Julie Hirschfeld Davis
White House Correspondent
The New York Times

(202) xxx-xxx-xxxx mobile
(202) xxx-xxx-xxxx direct

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