Corker Completes Middle East Trip With Visits To Oman And Bahrain

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Senator Bob Corker completed a three-nation trip to the Middle East today in Bahrain where he continued to assess U.S. diplomatic and security relations in the Gulf region.  After a visit with U.S. Ambassador Thomas C. Krajeski, he met with Crown Prince Sheikh Salman bin Hamad al Khalifa to discuss the state of U.S.-Bahrain relations and the Crown Prince’s ongoing efforts for political reform and stability amidst continued unrest.

“Bahrain is an important and longstanding U.S. ally, hosting the U.S. 5th Fleet, which plays a significant role in regional stability and protecting the global flow of energy.  It is in our national interest to continue our strong military partnership, ensure the country remains stable and encourage nonviolent reformers on both sides to continue to work together to achieve a political solution to Bahrain’s own internal problems,” said Senator Corker.  

During his visit to Bahrain, Senator Corker also met American service members deployed to Bahrain with the U.S. Navy’s Fifth Fleet, including Commander Vice Admiral John W. Miller and sailors and marines from Tennessee.  He then met with Bahrain’s minister of justice, their chief of police and leaders of the nonviolent opposition group al-Wifaq.  Finally, Senator Corker met with U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, who is in Bahrain for the Manama Dialogue, to discuss security challenges and the continued need for U.S. engagement in the region.

On Wednesday in Oman’s capital of Muskat, Senator Corker met with Foreign Affairs Minister Yusuf bin Alawi bin Abdullah about negotiations over Iran’s nuclear program. Senator Corker was the first member of Congress to meet Sheikh Khalid bin Hilal bin Nasser al Ma’wali, the first elected chairman of the Omani Consultative Council, which was granted expanded legislative and regulatory powers following popular uprisings associated with the Arab Spring in 2011.

“While I have expressed my concerns about the interim agreement with Iran and how they remain a constant, destabilizing force in other ways in the region, I appreciate Oman’s firm commitment to a peaceful, diplomatic solution to the nuclear issue and the role they have played in facilitating negotiations,” said Senator Corker.  “Chairman Khalid al Ma’wali brings intelligence and enthusiasm to his historic role on the Consultative Council.  I support the council’s efforts to give a voice to the people of Oman and hope their members will visit the U.S. soon as they continue to navigate the challenges of representative government.”

Senator Corker also visited with private sector executives from Oman’s oil and gas industry and midshipmen from the U.S. Naval Academy studying Arabic in Oman.

On Monday and Tuesday, Senator Corker was in Saudi Arabia where he heard concerns about the worsening conflict in Syria as well as Iran’s role in the region.



Lightner Charged In Incident In Which Police Vehicles Were Rammed

Police have charged Lovell Deon Lightner in an incident Wednesday in which two police vehicles were rammed. Lightner, 42, of 2219 E. 19th St., is charged with three counts of aggravated assault on police, aggravated burglary and theft over $1,000. Police said they were dispatched to a theft in progress at 1213 E. 34th St. Lightner was seen walking between the house and a storage ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Police Officer Resigns Before Being Fired On Charges Of Misconduct And Theft

Kevin Kincer submitted his resignation with the Chattanooga Police Department on Monday. Kincer was placed on administrative leave on Dec. 17,  2014, pending charges of three counts of official misconduct and three counts of theft. After a complete review of the investigation, which included recommendations from Internal Affairs, the Administrative Review Committee and ... (click for more)

Physicians Thank Their Patients On Doctor’s Day

March 30 has been set aside as National Doctors’ Day since 1933 as a time to recognize the contributions made by our physicians. While the recognition is appreciated, our greatest satisfaction comes from caring for our patients.  For 132 years, the Chattanooga-Hamilton County Medical Society has been the physicians’ voice as we worked together to improve health of our community. ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The 15-Year-Old Marine

There are 58,267 names on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall that today sits majestically in the Constitution Gardens of our nation's capital. It has never been lost on me that 33,103 of those who are named were only 18 years old when they died. But what caught my eye during my morning reading is that one of the names carved in the black granite “Dan Bullock“ was only 15 years old ... (click for more)

Rail Runners Win In Double OT

East Ridge Alum Alex Wells has an impressive scoring resume from high school to now in semi pro, but missing is a game-winning shot at any level.   But Sunday afternoon in a Central Basketball Association game, he did everything but hit the winner (16 points) in guiding the Chattanooga Rail Runners to a 116-113 double overtime win against visiting Bowling Green (Ky.). ... (click for more)

UTC Women's Tennis Takes 1st Win Over Furman Since 1997

The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga women’s tennis got a huge monkey off its back with a 4-3 win over Furman on Sunday.  The Mocs snapped a 24-match losing streak against the Paladins with their first win in the series since 1997. UTC had come close in the last four meetings, falling 4-3 each time.  Today’s win gives Chattanooga a 14-2 overall record as it ... (click for more)