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Obama’s first farewell tour starts with damage control

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President Barack Obama.

WASHINGTON (AP) _ President Barack Obama sets out this week on his first in a series of international farewell tours.

The first stop _ in Saudi Arabia _ will involve more damage control than nostalgia.

He arrives Wednesday for a Persian Gulf summit. Obama will be met by leaders upset by his recent public complaints about global “free riders” and harboring deep distrust of his dealings with Iran and his posture in Syria.

Obama’s later stops are in Britain and Germany.

But before those stops, the White House will look to provide some measure of reassurance to Arab allies that are critical to U.S. counterterrorism goals. The trip comes as Arab leaders increasingly look beyond Obama and toward the next president.

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