The Middle East representative states the U.S. is 'not moving anywhere,' as China's Xi anticipated visiting Saudi Arabia

The Middle East representative states the U.S. is 'not moving anywhere,'

August 16, 2022: -On Friday, U.S. President Joe Biden’s administration denied assertions that a future visit by Chinese President Xi Jinping to Saudi Arabia indicates America’s weakening influence in the Middle East, which demands that the U.S. is “not going anywhere.”

Tim Lenderking, the U.S. special envoy for Yemen, said diplomatic visits by different global influences were desired but noted that the U.S. had asserted its commitment to the area following Biden’s visit in July.

“The major message that the president is bringing to the region is that the United States is not going anywhere,” Lenderking told CNBC.

On Thursday, Reports appeared that Xi is to arrive in Saudi Arabia in the coming week for a discussion with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the Chinese premier’s first official foreign visit since 2020, as Beijing and Riyadh seek to consolidate ties. The Foreign Ministry of China neither confirmed nor refuted the reports.

On Friday, Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Ministry and China’s Foreign Ministry were not directly available to remark when contacted by CNBC.

That Xi is expecting to be satisfied with all the pomp and fanfare afforded to former U.S. President Donald Trump in his 2017 visit does little to improve the optics of stay of Biden, a low-key affair that critics say gained little amid strained personal ties between the two leaders. Although, Lenderking insisted that the U.S. retains a “vital” presence.

“The U.S is an important partner to not only Saudi Arabia but every country in the region,” he added.

“America can be mentioned on to remain in the neighborhood as a support for the cities and their security. That is an American priority,” he further said.

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