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Biden Says He Has 'Not Yet' Decided On Saudi Trip

PARIS, France - U.S. President Joe Biden said he had 'not yet' decided if he will travel to Saudi Arabia, a week after he opened the door to a possible trip.

Sources have said Biden was planning a trip to Saudi Arabia, along with a trip to Europe and Israel in late June. The White House has said the president feels that Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman is a 'pariah' for his role in the killing of a political opponent, Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi, in Turkey in 2018.

The Saudi government has denied any involvement by the crown prince.

Asked by a reporter later in Albuquerque, New Mexico, if he would use a possible trip to the Middle East to secure a deal to improve Saudi - Israeli relations, Biden said: 'We'll see'.

Any potential visit to Saudi Arabia likely would be aimed at bolstering relations with the country at a time when Biden is trying to find ways to lower gasoline prices in the United States.

A White House official said on Friday that the United States would not overlook conduct that took place before Biden's presidency, but that 'it was also important to reorient - but not rupture - relations with Saudi Arabia', nothing the country's role as a strategic partner of the United States for eight decades.



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