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Obama to visit Saudi Arabia in March: White House

Published on Feb 4, 2014 1:56 AM

WASHINGTON (AFP) - US President Barack Obama will travel to ally Saudi Arabia in March, following clear signs of disquiet in Riyadh about his Middle Eastern policies and nuclear talks with Iran.

Obama will fly to meet King Abdullah on a trip added onto existing visits to the Netherlands, Brussels and Vatican City, the White House said in a statement on Monday.

The White House said that Obama planned to talk to the king about the strategic relationship between the United States and Saudi Arabia and "Gulf and regional security, peace in the Middle East, countering violent extremism and other issues of prosperity and security."

Prominent members of the Saudi national security establishment have made no secret about their skepticism towards Obama's policies in the Middle East, especially since the emergence of Arab Spring revolutions in early 2011.

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