White House announces Obama visit to Pakistan 'later this year'

President Obama is looking ahead toward a visit to Pakistan this year, the White House said Friday.

Obama, during a meeting on Friday at the White House with Pakistani Prime Minister Asif Ali Zardafri, said that he is "looking forward to visiting Pakistan later this year," according to a White House readout of the meeting.

Pakistan is a crucial country for the U.S. as it prosecutes its prolonged war in Afghanistan. The two countries border each other, and the U.S. has increased pressure on the Pakistani government to deny safe haven for representatives of terrorist groups, possibly including Osama Bin Laden.

Vice President Joe Biden stopped in both Pakistan and Afghanistan during a foreign policy trip this week to tour U.S. combat and diplomatic operations.