A picture provided by the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) shows Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz (R) meeting with French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius in the capital Riyadh on April 12, 2015. AFP PHOTO / SPA / HO
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Saudi Arabia gave a royal welcome to France's Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius during a visit that highlighted a deepening of ties with major powers beyond traditional ally the United States.Fabius met King Salman, Crown Prince Moqren, Deputy Crown Prince and Interior Minister Mohammed bin Nayef, along with the king's son Defense Minister Mohammed bin Salman, who leads the kingdom's war against Shiite Houthi rebels in Yemen.Riyadh and its partners in the Gulf accuse Washington of having abandoned Egypt's President Hosni Mubarak, their ally overthrown in a 2011 uprising, while failing to act against Assad, said David Butter of London's Chatham House think tank.He said there are "clearly a lot of tensions in the relationship" between Riyadh and the United States, even if Washington remains the kingdom's primary military supplier and the two sides continue to work together.
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