Obama says US and Gulf united against Islamic State

US President Barack Obama said on Thursday that Washington and Gulf Arab states were united against the Islamic State group as he sought to overcome strains on Iran to boost efforts against the jihadists.
In Riyadh for talks hosted by Saudi Arabia, Obama said the US still has “serious concerns” about Iran, but insisted no country has an interest in conflict with Tehran.

Obama, on likely his final presidential visit to America’s historic Gulf allies, was seeking to reduce tensions with the Arab states rooted in US overtures to their regional rival Iran.

With the IS jihadists suffering a series of recent setbacks in areas under their control in Syria and Iraq, Washington is seeking more help from the oil-rich Gulf states to keep up the pressure.

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Speaking at the close of the summit of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), Obama played down any divisions and vowed continued cooperation in the battle against the extremists.

“We remain united in our fight to destroy (IS),” he said.