Obama to Return to Sunnylands for Another Summit in February

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Obama Palm Springs
US President Barack Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping walk the grounds at The Annenberg Retreat at Sunnylands in Rancho Mirage, California, on June 8, 2013. (Photo: Reuters / Kevin Lamarque)

RANCHO  MIRAGE – President Barack Obama will hold a Feb. 14 summit with King Abdullah II of Jordan at the Sunnylands Estate in Rancho Mirage, the White House announced Wednesday.

The two leaders will discuss “opportunities to strengthen the U.S.- Jordan strategic partnership and how to advance our political, economic and security cooperation.” They will also discuss Middle East peace and neighboring Syria, according to a White House statement.

Abdullah met with members of Congress in the Jordanian capital of Amman last week to discuss issues in the Middle East, and met with Obama in Jordan last March. The two countries are “close friends and historic partners that have worked together to promote peace, prosperity and reform,” according to the White House statement.

It will be Obama’s second summit at Sunnylands. Last June, he met with Chinese President Xi Jinping for two days at the former Annenberg estate, where they spoke about such topics as cyber security and greenhouse gas emissions.

Sunnylands will be closed to the public Feb. 10-17.

“We are profoundly honored that President Obama has chosen Sunnylands as the venue for this important meeting,” said Geoffrey Cowan, president of the Annenberg Foundation Trust at Sunnylands.

“Walter and Leonore Annenberg were outstanding philanthropists and diplomats who hoped that their estate would become the ‘Camp David of the West’ where the president could meet with world leaders to promote global peace and facilitate international agreements,” he said. “The upcoming meeting between President Obama and His Majesty King Abdullah II of Jordan … continues to fulfill that vision, which is carried on by their children and grandchildren who serve as our trustees.”

The estate, built in the mid-1960s by the Annenbergs, has hosted presidents, foreign heads of state, Supreme Court justices and celebrities. Sunnylands opened to the public in 2012.