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Gates in Saudi Arabia for Talks Focused on Iran


U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates (File)

U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates (File)

U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates is in Saudi Arabia for talks centered on Iran's controversial nuclear program.

Gates flew Wednesday into Riyadh, where he is expected to update King Abdullah on U.S.-led efforts to impose new United Nations sanctions on Iran for refusing to halt uranium enrichment. The U.S. has been trying to build international support for possible action against Tehran.

Gates also is expected to discuss U.S. efforts to help Saudi Arabia bolster its air and missile defense programs.

The defense secretary arrived in Saudi Arabia after a three-day visit to Afghanistan, where he met with leaders there. That trip briefly overlapped Wednesday with a visit from Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who met with some of the same Afghan officials.

The United States, Britain, France and Germany have proposed the fourth round of sanctions against Iran.

Western nations suspect Iran is enriching uranium to make nuclear weapons. Iran says it is only trying to produce fuel for a research reactor.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP.

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