VP Biden, Jordan King Hold Talks

VP Biden, Jordan King Hold Talks

AMMAN, Jordan (AP) -- Vice President Joe Biden held talks Thursday with Jordan's King Abdullah II, a key U.S. military ally in the region, including in the battle against Islamic State extremists.

Washington has scaled up military aid to Jordan in recent months in line with the kingdom's central role in the fight against IS, which controls large areas of neighboring Syria and Iraq.

Later Thursday, the vice president and the Jordanian monarch are to attend a military drill for Jordanian and U.S. forces at a security compound near the capital of Amman.

As part of the deepening military cooperation, the U.S. last week gave Jordan eight Blackhawk helicopters to help boost border protection. An additional eight Blackhawks are in the pipeline.

Jordan is Biden's last stop on a Mideast swing that also included the United Arab Emirates, Israel and the Palestinian territories.