Secre­tary of State Mike Pompe­o speaks to students at the Ameri­can Unive­rsity in Cairo in New Cairo, Egypt, Jan. 10, 2019. Image Credit: NYT

Washington: The United States plans to host a global summit focused on the Middle East, particularly Iran, next month in Poland, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told Fox News in a report published on Friday.

In an interview with the news network, Pompeo said the international gathering would be held Feb. 13 to Feb. 14 in Poland to “focus on Middle East stability and peace and freedom and security here in this region, and that includes an important element of making sure that Iran is not a destabilising influence”.

Pompeo arrived in Bahrain on Friday, the first leg of a tour of Gulf monarchies which Washington says are “critical” to confronting Iran and Islamist terrorists.

In Bahrain, Pompeo is due to have a working lunch with King Hamad, Crown Prince Salman and Foreign Minister Shaikh Khalid Bin Ahmad Al Khalifa, according to his official programme.

Bahrain, a key US ally in the Gulf, hosts the US Navy’s Fifth Fleet with around 7,800 US military personnel deployed in the country, as well as a British naval base.

It is one of the closest allies of regional power house Saudi Arabia and shares its hostility Iran.

“Bahrain is a staunch supporter of countering Iran’s malign efforts” in the region, the US spokesman said.

“Bahrain continues efforts to investigate and counter Iranian sanctions evasion and combat illicit maritime activity,” he added.

Pompeo’s visit is part of a whistlestop regional tour aimed at reassuring US allies after President Donald Trump’s shock decision to withdraw all US troops from Syria.