Joe Biden, the President of the United States, is planning a visit to Saudi Arabia – a first in-person meeting with the Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman he once shunned as a murderer. A person familiar with White House planning says the administration is considering a trip to Saudi Arabia, in which the president would meet with leaders from the Gulf Cooperation Council countries such as Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, Oman, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates as well as Iraq, Jordan, and Egypt. A person spoke on condition of anonymity regarding yet-to-be-determined plans.
Biden is interested in making a trip to KSA, a visit that would hopefully bring him in-person meeting with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. Washington is considering a visit to the Middle East, including leaders of the Gulf Cooperation Council, Jordan, Egypt, & Iraq. pic.twitter.com/8gP0BWL003
— Live News Now (@LiveNewsNow6) June 2, 2022
In his campaign for the White House, Biden pledged an arms-length relationship with the Saudis. Now, when overriding security, economic, and energy interests have pushed the administration to rethink that stance. Biden’s meeting with Saudi Arabia’s de facto ruler Prince Mohammed bin Salman during his visit to the Middle East could result in some relief for United States gasoline consumers, who are winning because of tight oil supplies around the world. If Biden makes the tour to Saudi Arabia, he is likely to meet with MBS – the initials of Prince Mohammed, according to the source familiar with the planning.
Biden Europe Tour
Despite repeated requests, White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre refused to comment on Wednesday on whether Biden will travel to Saudi Arabia. At the end of June, Biden will travel to Europe. During his trip, he could stop in Saudi Arabia to meet with Prince Mohammed, King Salman, and others. If he extends his upcoming travels to include Saudi Arabia, he is likely to visit Israel as well. In the past week, the White House confirmed that Amos Hochstein, the U.S. State Department senior adviser for energy security, and Brett McGurk, the NSC Middle East coordinator, visited the region. On Monday, Blinken and his Saudi counterpart held a telephone conversation.
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