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Biden says he currently has “no direct plans” to travel to Saudi Arabia

WASHINGTON — President Biden said Friday that he has “no direct plans” to travel to Saudi Arabia later this month, but he could meet with Israeli and Arab leaders while the US and Saudi Arabia try to ease their tense revitalize relationships.

Speaking to reporters in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, Mr. Biden said he had been “striving to bring more stability to the Middle East” and that travel to the region was a possibility.

See also: Biden decides to travel to Saudi Arabia as OPEC+ boosts oil production

“I assume Saudi Arabia would be there if I went, but I don’t have any specific plans at the moment,” he said.

Mr. Biden is expected to travel to Europe in late June to attend meetings of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization and the G-7 group of largest advanced economies. The White House has weighed stops in Saudi Arabia and Israel as part of the itinerary.

Mr Biden’s potential trip to the Middle East comes as Saudi Arabia-led OPEC and its allies agreed this week on a stronger-than-expected increase in oil production, allowing Riyadh to potentially pump more crude. Saudi Arabia has also agreed to extend a two-month-old ceasefire with Iran-backed Houthi fighters in Yemen, where the kingdom has been embroiled in a costly and unpopular seven-year-old war.

An expanded version of this story appears on WSJ.com.

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Brian Lowry

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