RIYADH, Saudi Arabia - President Barack Obama strained to ease tensions with Persian Gulf allies Thursday, pledging U.S. help in confronting Iran and other security threats. Yet he failed to win the commitments he sought to boost economic aid to Iraq.
Obama's trip to Saudi Arabia - the fourth and probably last of his presidency - did not result in any major breakthroughs. Obama said Gulf leaders attending the regional summit had agreed to step up the campaign against the Islamic State group, but did not lay out specifics. He described the talks as a chance to clear up misperceptions among allies, insisting the U.S. and Gulf partners had "tactical differences" but similar goals.
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"A lot of the strain was always overblown," Obama said as he closed a two-day trip here.