US Secretary of State John Kerry (R) is pictured during a meeting with Saudi Arabia Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir in central London on January 14, 2016. AFP PHOTO/Kevin Lamarque/POOL
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U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir insisted Thursday that their countries' ties remain strong despite recent tensions over Washington's outreach to Iran.Saudi Arabia has regarded Kerry's cautious outreach to Tehran – and burgeoning relationship with its Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif – with suspicion, and the London visit was designed to rebuild trust.Without mentioning Iran, Kerry expressed sympathy for Saudi Arabia's concerns – shared by the United States – over its web of influence in the Arab world.The United States expressed concern after Saudi Arabia marked the New Year by carrying out a mass execution, including that of the respected Shiite Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr accused of fomenting sedition.
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