Joe Biden Lashes Critics of His Fist Bump with Mohammed bin Salman

Saudi fist bump
Saudi Press Agency via AP

President Joe Biden lashed out Sunday at critics of his fist bump greeting with Saudi Arabian Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

“Why don’t you guys talk about something that matters?” Biden snapped after reporters asked him if he regretted the fist bump moment.

“I’m happy to answer a question that matters.”

The president spoke to reporters briefly after returning to the White House, but did not want to address his controversial moment with the crown prince, despite vowing during his presidential campaign to treat the Saudis as a pariah for the murder of dissident columnist Jamal Khashoggi.

On Friday, Biden laughed at reporters when asked to respond to his critics.

He insisted he brought up Khashoggi’s murder at the top of his meeting with Salman, saying he was “straightforward and direct” with the crown prince.

“He basically said that he — he was not personally responsible for it. I indicated that he probably was,” Biden said.

In an interview with CNN, Saudi Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Adel al-Jubeir disagreed with Biden’s characterization of the meeting.

He countered the president took Saudi Arabia’s claims “at face value.”

When reporters asked Biden if he thought the Saudis were telling the truth about the meeting, he replied, “No.”


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