U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton attends the inaugural meeting of a new U.S.-Gulf security forum in Saudi Arabia.
Clinton says the United States will work with Gulf Arab nations to strengthen their shared defenses against threats including Iran.
Saturday's discussions also touched on Syria. The United States and Gulf Nations are now calling on UN envoy Kofi Annan to set a timeline for the next steps if violence continues in Syria..
Speculation about Tehran's nuclear ambitions is a source of anxiety among Sunni-led Gulf Arab states, for whom Shi'ite Iran has long been a regional rival.
Fresh talks between Iran and world powers are expected to get underway in mid-April as Tehran faces increasing economic and political pressure over its nuclear activities.
Western diplomats and analysts say that getting Iran to stop the higher-level uranium enrichment it started two years ago and has since sharply increased will be a priority in next month's talks - the latest bid to avert the threat of Israeli air strikes on Iranian nuclear sites.
Deborah Lutterbeck reports.