U.S. President Barack Obama, left, and Pakistan's Prime Minister Mohammad Nawaz Sharif, right, attend the opening session of the Nuclear Summit in The Hague, the Netherlands, on Monday, March 24, 2014. (AP Photo/Yves Herman, POOL)
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President Barack Obama and Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif stressed the positives of a troubled alliance Thursday, during an Oval Office meeting shaded by security disagreements.Amid smiles and handshakes, Obama welcomed Sharif to the White House and hailed a "long standing relationship" between the United States and Pakistan. Islamabad's ties with the Afghan Taliban, support for terror groups that target India and the United States and its rapidly growing nuclear arsenal are seen by Washington as monumental security headaches.Obama recently announced that U.S. troops would be staying in Afghanistan longer than he had promised, but the White House is keen to get the Taliban to the negotiating table.Experts say that the new Taliban leader Akhtar Mansour has close ties to Pakistan.U.S. officials have poured cold water on that suggestion and Sharif was quoted by Pakistani media as pointing out that he was prime minister when the country first become a declared nuclear state.
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