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Obama departs for G20 meeting in Russia

U.S. President Barack Obama bids farewell to officials before boarding a plane on Thursday. Next stop: St. Petersburg in Russia for the Group of 20 summit. Although the meeting is about the global economy, many expect the Syrian conflict to dominate and the likelihood of a showdown between Obama and the summit host, President Vladimir Putin whose country is a strong ally of Syria. The U.S. congress is currently debating a military strike on Syrian territory after reports surfaced of a chemical attack targeting civilians, which the U.S. blames on Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. Before departing, Obama met with Sweden's royal family, including King Carl Gustaf and his wife Queen Silvia. Obama used his Sweden visit to make his case for a U.S.-led strike, despite Putin's claims that congressional approval for military action would be seen as an act of aggression.

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