President Joe Biden on Thursday defended his decision to meet with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman while refusing to claim to challenge the kingdom’s leadership over his widely condemned human rights record – a sign of Biden’s confidence in the success of his major Middle East tour his to date.
“My position on Khashoggi is absolutely clear and I have never been silent when it comes to human rights,” Biden said at a Thursday morning press conference with acting Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid, referring to the dissident journalist. American politician and resident Jamal Khashoggi. , the creepy killer in Turkey in 2018 approved by the prince of Saudi ArabiaAmerican intelligence believes.
“The reason I went to Saudi Arabia is to advance American interests in a way that I think we have an opportunity to reassert our influence in the Middle East,” Biden said on Monday. The five-day journey through Israel, disputed parts of the West Bank and finally Saudi Arabia. Biden warned of the strong impact of isolating the Arab kingdom and added, “I’ve always stood for human rights.”
However, Biden refused and said he would explicitly mention Khashoggi.
The President had to face bipartisan criticism for months because of his decision to make the trip – especially the meeting with the crown prince after insisting on the campaign trail that he would see Saudi Arabia become a “pariah” state. Biden also faces great pressure to deliver on promises of steady economic inflation and rising gas prices even as analysts express widespread skepticism that the meetings His meeting this week could bring about any tangible change.
Middle Eastern cartoons
Among the most closely scrutinized symbolic actions include whether Biden would shake the crown prince’s hand after landing in Jeddah on a direct flight from Israel to Saudi Arabia this weekend – a first. for an American leader. White House officials have pushed back against speculation that Biden’s decision so far to greet hosts Israel with fists and other handshake gestures was an excuse to avoid diplomatic tampering when he arrived in Saudi Arabia. Saudi Arabia.
“We never gave instructions that no one should shake hands or anything,” a senior administration official told reporters traveling with the president. “The president today combined – as President Biden often does – different types of greetings.”
“The president will be meeting with a wide range of leaders over the course of these three days,” the official added, “so there will be a lot of meetings, and we will follow protocols in every capital where we are going.” live in.”
Despite the risk of major diplomatic pitfalls, Biden’s ride so far has been largely smooth with some signs of renewed stability in an increasingly dangerous region. He signed a joint statement with Lapid who is currently wading through his own domestic political funeral – “reaffirming the unbreakable relationship” between the United States and the Jewish state is “expanding on the longstanding security relationship.” The pact is seen as an endorsement of the so-called Abrahamic Agreement that Biden’s predecessor helped broker, encouraging a host of Middle Eastern countries to formalize relations with Israel.
A White House official told reporters: “This statement is quite significant and includes a commitment to never allow Iran to acquire a nuclear weapon and to address Iran’s destabilizing activities, especially the threats to Israel”. Lapid himself said when welcoming Biden at Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion airport that he intended to “discuss the need to renew a strong global coalition to stop Iran’s nuclear program”.
Perhaps the only source of division so far among Biden’s hosts is the future of the 2015 deal he helped negotiate as vice president, before President Donald Trump decided to unilaterally withdraw. from the deal while still exploiting some of its mechanisms as part of the “maximum pressure of his administration” to isolate Tehran.
Israel has strongly opposed the Biden administration’s attempt to bring Iran back into the deal, particularly the provisions that allow the West to monitor its nuclear capabilities. Western intelligence officials, including Former Director of National Intelligence Jim Clapperhas suggested that the massive technological developments Iran has made with its nuclear program since Trump withdrew leaves Tehran with no incentive to return to international scrutiny.
Other analysts fear Iran will use Biden’s trip to kick off some kind of major security incident as before during other visits by the president of the United States. It has yet to take military action similar to the attacks on Saudi Arabia it staged in 2017 through the Houthis’ proxy Yemeni militia hours before Trump landed for the visit. its first international. But it has introduced dramatic new threats and other forms of provocation against the US
A senior aide to Iran’s foreign minister, Mohammad Sadeq Fazli, said on Wednesday, according to state media: “The bitter fruit of this diabolical trip is seduction, war, fraternity, and conspiracy. “. “Biden’s ill-willed visit was aimed at normalizing relations with Israel’s cancer regime, which is the root cause of all insecurity and threats in the region.”
“As God has promised, and that is the request of the Muslim nations, we will see that Muslim resistance [front] Fazli said.
His comments come days after national security adviser Jake Sullivan confirmed reports that Iran plans to sell armed drones to Russia to support its ongoing invasion. Moscow into Ukraine. The conflict has sparked widespread concern in the West about a further expansion of violence as the White House insists the invasion has also caused gas prices at US pumps to spike.
Russian President Vladimir Putin plans to visit Tehran next week for meetings with the country’s top leaders – one of his first foreign trips since launching the invasion of Ukraine. at the end of February.
Janaseva News Medium Account