World Leaders React To Joe Biden Beating Donald Trump: “It’s Time To Get Back To Building Bridges, Not Walls”

Patrick Hipes and Nancy Tartaglione
·5 min read

SUNDAY UPDATE, writethru after Saturday 10:39AM PT post, with more reactions: The Saturday call that Joe Biden has been elected the 46th President of the United States elicited a swarm of congratulations as is the custom after an election. Reactions from world leaders and U.S. allies including Germany’s chancellor Angela Merkel and Canada Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, both of whom have crossed swords with current President Donald Trump in the past, were among those to make statements.

The global media was also digesting the news, with part of the world still in the overnight hours. Since then, leaders from such countries as South Korea, Australia and Israel added their sentiments.

Some politicians Saturday diverted from the usual formal declarations in their pronouncements, including Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo (her tweet started with “Welcome back America”) and London Mayor Sadiq Khan (“London looks forward to working with you – it’s time to get back to building bridges, not walls.”)

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Here’s a sample of what’s been said:

Germany chancellor Angela Merkel, who said in part, “I look forward to future cooperation with President Biden… Our transatlantic friendship is irreplaceable if we are to master the great challenges of our time.” (Merkel is also due to give a briefing late Sunday afternoon local time.)

Canada Prime Minister Justin Trudeau:

“On behalf of the Government of Canada, I congratulate Joe Biden and Kamala Harris on their election as the next President and Vice President of the United States of America. Canada and the United States enjoy an extraordinary relationship – one that is unique on the world stage.”

“I look forward to working with President-elect Biden, Vice President-elect Harris, their administration, and the United States Congress as we tackle the world’s greatest challenges together.”

French President Emanuel Macron:

Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte vowed the U.S. “can rely on Italy as a solid ally and strategic partner”:

Sadiq Kahn, the Mayor of London:

Anne Hidalgo, the Mayor of Paris:

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi congratulated Biden and gave a special shout out to Kamala Harris and her “chitttis” or “aunts”:

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was one of the late-comers, making a statement on Sunday morning. He noted the “long & warm personal relationship” he has had with Biden “for nearly 40 years”:

Netanyahu followed that up by thanking Donald Trump for “the friendship you have shown the state of Israel.”

South Korean President Moon Jae-in enthusiastically chimed in on Sunday:

Australia’s Scott Morrison:

First Vice President of Iran, Eshaq Jahangiri, tweeted late Saturday that he hoped to see a change in “America’s destructive policies.”

So far absent from public comments are such world leaders as Russia’s Vladimir Putin, Brazil’s Jair Bolsonaro and China’s Xi Jinping.

Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said at a news conference, according to Reuters, “With regard to the U.S. election, we are going to wait until all the legal matters have been resolved… I can’t congratulate one candidate or the other. I want to wait until the electoral process is over.”

Germany Foreign Minister Heiko Maas:

“It’s good that there are finally clear figures. We look forward to working with the next U.S. government. We want to invest in our cooperation for a new transatlantic beginning, a new deal.”

Der Spiegel‘s homepage in Germany on Saturday night:

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