With a good chance that both Bernie Sanders or Joe Biden may win the 2020 presidential election, Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to the US has predicted that the hostility of the Democratic candidates towards the kingdom will quickly change.
“I’ve always found that many times, once a president gets to the White House when they see a 360 [degree] effect, opinions can change,” the Ambassador, Princess Reema Bint Bandar Al Saud, told the AP news agency.
“And so I will never comment on an election — it’s not our place — but I look forward to working with whoever’s in the White House.”
Bint Bandar Al-Saud’s remarks questioned the Democratic candidates’ promise to take a harsher stance towards Riyadh. In November, Biden said he would stop selling arms to the Saudis, accusing the Gulf kingdom of “murdering children” in its long and bloody intervention in Yemen’s civil war.
“There is very little social redeeming value in the present government in Saudi Arabia,” the former vice-president said. “We were going to in fact make them pay the price, and make them in fact the pariah that they are.”
Biden’s campaign team has said that he would “reevaluate [our] relationship with Saudi Arabia to ensure it is fully aligned with American values and priorities.”
Sanders, Biden’s main rival in the Democratic leadership contest, described Saudi rulers as “murderous thugs”.
“For years, we have loved Saudi Arabia – our wonderful ally. The only problem is, the people who run that country are murderous thugs,” he said during a broadcast on CNN. Sanders has also called to “defund” the Saudis along with its ally the UAE.