Abadi and Salman arrive for a rare meeting in Riyadh.
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Saudi Arabia is not yet ready to begin direct talks with Doha to resolve the nearly 5-month-old diplomatic and trade cutoff affecting Qatar, U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said Sunday at a press conference in Doha.Besides aiming to persuade the feuding Gulf states to open dialogue, Tillerson's visit also appears aimed in part at boosting Saudi Arabia's clout in Iraq, where Shiite forces backed by Tehran are fighting in the north, as part of a wider regional battle for influence that extends from Syria to Yemen.A senior U.S. official said Tillerson had been referring to Al-Hashd al-Shaabi and the Quds Force, the foreign paramilitary and espionage arm of the powerful Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps.A new joint ministerial-level body between Iraq and Saudi Arabia convened its inaugural meeting earlier Sunday to coordinate their fight against Daesh and to discuss rebuilding in Iraqi territory wrested from the group. Tillerson said the council would contribute to reforms to help build Iraq's private sector and encourage foreign investment.
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