In this photo released by official website the Iranian Presidency on Sunday, March 20, 2016, President Hassan Rouhani poses for a portrait prior to delivering a message for the Iranian New Year, Iran. (Iranian Presidency Office via AP)
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Iran's Hassan Rouhani was expected in Pakistan Friday in a landmark visit, his first since becoming president, at a time when Saudi Arabia is courting Islamabad to increase participation in a new Saudi-led military alliance of mostly Sunni nations, a coalition perceived by Tehran as an anti-Shiite block.Pakistan, a majority Sunni country, has traditionally close ties with Saudi Arabia, which is hostile to Iran, a Shiite power. The country frequently sees Sunni militant groups attacking the Shiite minority, which in turn has accused Saudi Arabia of financing groups like Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, blamed for many such deadly attacks. For their part, the militant Sunni groups accuse Iran of financing a Pakistani militant Shiite group, Tehreek Nafaz-e-Fiqh-e-Jafariya.
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