Joe Biden has made his first visit to the Middle East as US president, and while he is no stranger to the region — having visited dozens of times as vice president and while serving as a senator for Delaware — this is the first trip he has made since he was elected to America’s top office.
His visit comes at a time of uncertainty.
Oil and food prices have surged since the Russian invasion of Ukraine and global inflationary pressures are pushing up prices across the board. Talks with Iran on reviving a nuclear accord to limit Tehran’s enrichment of uranium have stalled. A tentative ceasefire in Yemen is holding, but major challenges remain to end the lengthy conflict. Energy and security might be top of his agenda but so is the fundamental question of America’s role in the Middle East.
This week on Beyond the Headlines, host James Haines-Young talks to The National's US correspondent Willy Lowry about Mr Biden’s visit to the Middle East, how it was received and how it will be remembered.