Wedding set for Bahrain and Saudi royal families

Bahrain says the son of the island nation's king and the daughter of Saudi Arabia's monarch have agreed to wed — further cementing ties boosted by cooperation to crush pro-reform protests.

An announcement on the official Bahrain News Agency says Bahrain's Sheik Khalid bin Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa signed a marriage contract Thursday with the daughter of Saudi King Abdullah. The Friday report did not give the woman's name or when the ceremony would occur.

Such strategic family alliances are common among the Gulf's Sunni leaders.

Saudi Arabia is leading a Gulf military force sent to Bahrain in March to help smother Shiite-led protests demanding greater rights.