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Russian Aggression On Agenda As Obama Hosts Nordic Leaders

Russia's increased military assertiveness will be at the top of the agenda when U.S. President Barack Obama meets with the leaders of five Nordic countries on May 13.

The leaders of Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Norway, and Iceland are making a visit to the White House , where Obama will welcome the leaders for talks on pressing global security issues, including the crises in Syria and Iraq that have sent thousands of migrants flooding into Europe.

Moscow's annexation of Crimea in 2014 alarmed Russia's Nordic and Baltic neighbors. With NATO considering ways to try to deter further Russian aggression, the White House wants to show support for its northern European allies.

"It is a way of sending a signal that the United States is deeply engaged when it comes to the security of the region, and we will be actively discussing what steps we can collectively take to improve the situation," said Charles Kupchan, Obama's senior director for European affairs.

Based on reporting by Reuters