President Obama shakes hands with Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud following a meeting in November at the G20 summit in Antalya, Turkey. Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Plenty Of Friction Expected During Obama's Visit To Saudi Arabia
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A motorcyclist waits Feb. 17 to buy gas in Caracas, Venezuela. President Nicolas Maduro increased the price of gasoline for the first time in 20 years, as he faced growing pressure to ease an economic crisis in the oil-producing country. Juan Barreto/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Cheap Oil Usually Means Global Growth, But This Time Seems Different
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Saudi artist Abdulnasser Gharem poses in front of "Generation Kill," a piece made with rubber stamps, digital print and paint, at the opening night of his exhibition titled Al Sahwa (The Awakening) at Ayyam gallery in Dubai in 2014. Aya Batrawy/AP hide caption

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A New Generation Of Saudi Artists Pushes The Boundaries
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Mohammed al-Nimr is the son Shiite Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr, who was executed by Saudi Arabia. Courtesy of Mohammed al-Nimr hide caption

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Shiite Sheikh Executed By Saudi Arabia Preached Against Violence, Son Says
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Saudi Arabia's King Salman (left) speaks with his son Mohammed in the capital Riyadh in 2012. The king was the crown prince at the time. When he assumed the throne last year, Salman named Mohammed, now 30, the deputy crown prince and defense minister. They have pursued a much more aggressive foreign policy in the region, particularly when it comes to confronting Iran. Hassan Ammar/AP hide caption

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Family members of Shafqat Hussain, who was convicted and hanged in Pakistan in August for killing a boy in 2004, waited to receive his body outside the central jail in Karachi. Pakistan executed more than 300 people last year. Fareed Khan/AP hide caption

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Fewer Countries Are Relying On Death Penalty, But They're Executing More
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An Iranian woman in Tehran holds up a poster showing Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr, a prominent opposition Saudi Shiite cleric who was executed in Saudi Arabia on Jan. 2. Vahid Salemi/AP hide caption

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Journalist Says Iran-Saudi Showdown Comes At A 'Really Dangerous' Time
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Shiite rebels hold posters of late Shiite cleric Nimr al-Nimr at a protest Thursday in Sanaa, Yemen. The cleric's execution by Saudi Arabia on Saturday sparked a dramatic deterioration in relations between Saudi and Iran. Hani Mohammed/AP hide caption

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Iran's president Hassan Rouhani addresses the nation in a televised speech last July. He has condemned the attack on the Saudi Arabian Embassy in Tehran, but the episode gave the appearance that he's unable to keep hardliners in check. Ebrahim Noroozi/AP hide caption

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President Obama meets Saudi Arabia's King Salman in Riyadh in January 2015. The Saudi monarch, in power for a year, has adopted more confrontational positions toward Iran, the kingdom's longtime rival. Carolyn Kaster/AP hide caption

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Under King Salman, Saudi Arabia Takes A Harder Line With Iran
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Iranian women in the capital Tehran demonstrate against the execution of a prominent Shiite Muslim cleric Nimr al-Nimr (seen on the signs). He was among 47 people beheaded by Saudi authorities on Saturday, a move that escalated tensions between the two countries. Atta Kenare/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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An Iraqi protester holds a poster of Shiite cleric Nimr al-Nimr, who was executed in Saudi Arabia, during a protest Monday in front of the gate of the Green Zone in Baghdad. Ali Abbas/EPA /Landov hide caption

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