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Obama heads to Saudi Arabia to pay condolences

Saudi Arabia

Saudi King Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz al-Saud sits before a meeting with U.S. SecretaReuters

U.S. President Barack Obama will visit Saudi Arabia on Tuesday to meet its new King Salman after the death of his predecessor Abdullah on Friday, testimony to Riyadh's important role in energy markets and the fight against Islamist militancy.

Russia's Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron, French President Francois Hollande and Japan's Crown Prince Naruhito will visit on Saturday and Sunday to offer condolences.

Obama will cut short a visit to India to pay his respects instead of Vice President Joe Biden, who had been scheduled to fly in from Washington, the White House said on Saturday.

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