President Joe Biden appeared wholly uninterested in taking questions from reporters on Friday, ignoring a number of shouted questions while he flipped through papers instead.
Biden held a lengthy video call with Chinese President Xi Jinping on Friday morning — nearly two hours — and reporters peppered the president with questions after.
Several outlets shared video of Biden calmly shuffling through papers, giving no indication that he was even hearing the chaotic shouting around him.
“Does Joe Biden feel good about refusing to answer any questions?” Townhall asked.
Does Joe Biden feel good about refusing to answer any questions? pic.twitter.com/vET7ZzO9EP
— Townhall.com (@townhallcom) March 18, 2022
“Reporters try to ask Biden questions as he smiles and ignores them,” The Blaze posted.
Reporters try to ask Biden questions as he smiles and ignores them. pic.twitter.com/AqG4W2teqo
— TheBlaze (@theblaze) March 18, 2022
The White House later released a readout of the call with President Xi, which largely revolved around Russia and the ongoing invasion of Ukraine.
BREAKING: Pres. Biden "described the implications and consequences if China provides material support to Russia as it conducts brutal attacks against Ukrainian cities and civilians" in call with Chinese Pres. Xi, White House says. https://t.co/1Q6dimB81F pic.twitter.com/Ul7ubM4YW4
— ABC News (@ABC) March 18, 2022
“President Joseph R. Biden, Jr. spoke today with President Xi Jinping of the People’s Republic of China (PRC). The conversation focused on Russia’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine,” the readout stated.
According to the readout, Biden spoke at length with Xi about the United States’ efforts along with allies and partners to discourage Russia from going ahead with the invasion — as well as efforts to cripple Russia’s financial sector once the invasion was already in progress. He also warned Xi that if China were to offer the kind of military or financial assistance to Russia that many western nations were offering to Ukraine, the reaction from the rest of the world would not be pleasant.
“President Biden detailed our efforts to prevent and then respond to the invasion, including by imposing costs on Russia. He described the implications and consequences if China provides material support to Russia as it conducts brutal attacks against Ukrainian cities and civilians. The president underscored his support for a diplomatic resolution to the crisis,” the statement continued.
According to reports, Russia has requested both financial and tactical assistance from China amid the ongoing invasion of Ukraine — which Russian President Vladimir Putin reportedly believed would be over in a matter of days rather than weeks. CNN reported that both China and Russia have denied that this request was ever made.
The readout from the call also noted that Biden had mentioned Taiwan, apparently warning the Chinese leader that the United States policy with regard to Taiwan “has not changed” and would oppose any move that China made to change the current status.
“The two leaders also agreed on the importance of maintaining open lines of communication, to manage the competition between our two countries. The president reiterated that U.S. policy on Taiwan has not changed, and emphasized that the United States continues to oppose any unilateral changes to the status quo,” it read. “The two leaders tasked their teams to follow up on today’s conversation in the critical period ahead.”