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Jan 27, 2015

In parting shot, Obama prods India on religious freedom

NEW DELHI (Reuters) – U.S. President Barack Obama weighed in on one of India’s most sensitive topics as he wound up a visit on Tuesday, making a plea for freedom of religion to be upheld in a country with a history of strife between Hindus and minorities.

Hours before boarding a flight to Saudi Arabia, Obama warned India not to stray from its constitutional commitment to allow people to freely “profess, practice and propagate” religion.

Jan 27, 2015

Obama includes Republicans in big delegation to meet new Saudi King

NEW DELHI (Reuters) – President Barack Obama will fly a 30-member delegation, including top officials and Republican foreign policy veterans, to Riyadh on Tuesday to meet Saudi Arabia’s new King Salman as the crisis in neighboring Yemen continues to boil.

The unscheduled trip to pay respects following the death last week of King Abdullah underscores a strengthening U.S.-Saudi alliance that extends beyond oil interests to regional security.

Jan 26, 2015

Small drone crashes on White House grounds but no danger seen

NEW DELHI/ WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A small drone known as a “quad copter” crashed on the grounds of the White House in the early hours of Monday but the drone did not appear to be dangerous, a White House spokesman said.

A government employee told the U.S. Secret Service that he was flying the unmanned aircraft recreationally before he lost control and accidentally breached the secure perimeter of the presidential mansion, The New York Times reported.

Jan 26, 2015

Obama ends day of Indian pageantry with $4 billion pledge

NEW DELHI, Jan 26 (Reuters) – U.S. President Barack Obama
ended a landmark day in India on Monday with a pledge of $4
billion in investments and loans, seeking to release what he
called the “untapped potential” of a business and strategic
partnership between the world’s largest democracies.

Earlier in the day, at the invitation of Prime Minister
Narendra Modi, Obama was the first U.S. president to attend
India’s annual Republic Day parade, a show of military might
that has been associated with Cold War anti-Americanism.

Jan 26, 2015

Small drone lands on White House grounds; no danger seen

NEW DELHI, Jan 26 (Reuters) – The U.S. Secret Service
recovered a small drone known as a “quad copter” on the grounds
of the White House early on Monday, but there was no immediate
danger from the incident, the White House said.

The device, approximately two feet (61 cm) in diameter, was
spotted flying at a low altitude at 3:08 am EST (0808 GMT)
before it crashed on the southeast side of White House grounds,
Secret Service spokeswoman Nicole Mainor said in a statement.

Jan 26, 2015

Obama, new Saudi king to discuss Yemen, Islamic State: White House

NEW DELHI (Reuters) – U.S. President Barack Obama and new Saudi Arabia King Salman are expected to discuss shared concerns about the turmoil in Yemen and the fight against Islamic State militants during their first formal meeting in Riyadh on Tuesday, the White House said.

Cutting short a visit to India, Obama is leading a U.S. delegation to the Saudi capital to offer condolences after the death of King Abdullah, Salman’s brother and a close ally of the United States.

Jan 26, 2015

U.S. sees role for India in battle against Islamic State

NEW DELHI, Jan 26 (Reuters) – India could play a role in
battling Islamic State, the White House said on Monday during a
visit to New Delhi by President Barack Obama, underlining
Washington’s confidence that India is increasingly prepared to
engage on global security issues.

U.S. Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes said
India’s involvement could focus on intelligence on the flow of
money and militants to the radical Islamist group active in
Syria and Iraq rather than deploying troops on the ground.

Jan 25, 2015

Obama defends U.S. counter-terrorism strategy in Yemen

NEW DELHI, Jan 25 (Reuters) – President Barack Obama on
Sunday defended his administration’s drone-based
counter-terrorism strategy against al Qaeda militants in Yemen,
saying the alternative would be to deploy U.S. troops, which was
not sustainable.

“It is not neat and it is not simple, but it is the best
option that we have,” Obama told reporters at a news conference
in New Delhi.

Jan 25, 2015

Bear hug with Modi gets Obama’s India trip off to warm start

NEW DELHI (Reuters) – Signalling his determination to take relations with the United States to a higher level, Prime Minister Narendra Modi broke with protocol to meet and bear-hug U.S. President Barack Obama as he landed in New Delhi on Sunday.

Obama’s visit is a fresh bid to make India an enduring strategic partner and he will seek to nurture friendship with a prime minister who a year ago was persona non grata in Washington.

Jan 21, 2015

U.S. Congress invites Netanyahu, Obama blindsided

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner on Wednesday invited Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to speak to Congress without consulting President Barack Obama, and a White House spokesman questioned whether protocol had been violated.

An Israeli official said Netanyahu, whose relationship with Obama has often been tense, was looking into the possibility of meeting with Obama when he comes to Washington to address a joint session of Congress on Feb. 11.

    • About Roberta

      "Based on Capitol Hill, I help cover U.S. energy and environmental policy. I have reported on commodities since 1995, and have been with Reuters since 2002, moving to Washington from Canada in 2008."
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