Biden says no plans to meet with Saudi crown prince during Kingdom visit

President says he will not meet Mohammed bin Salman, but acknowledges the two will be present at same meeting

Michael Hernandez   | 17.06.2022
Biden says no plans to meet with Saudi crown prince during Kingdom visit


US President Joe Biden said on Friday he has no plans to sit down with Saudi Arabia's de facto leader as he prepares to visit the Kingdom next month.

Asked if he would meet with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, Biden said, "I’m not going to meet with" him.

"I’m going to an international meeting. And he’s going to be a part of it, just like there were people part of the discussion today," Biden told reporters before departing the White House for his home state of Delaware.

Biden is slated to visit the Kingdom in mid-July, and participate in a meeting of the Gulf Cooperation Council in the city of Jeddah alongside nine regional leaders.

Biden has long opposed sitting down with bin Salman, whom US intelligence determined ordered the grisly 2018 murder of Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul.

Saudi Arabia initially denied responsibility for Khashoggi's killing, but eventually acknowledged it was responsible, attempting to frame his death as a botched rendition operation.

The president said in 2019 that he would make Saudi Arabia a "pariah" state, in part because of Khashoggi's murder.

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