Psaki Says Biden Will Attend UN Meeting With Unvaccinated World Leaders: ‘No Intention to Change Our Plans’
White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Monday President Joe Biden had no plans to back out of speaking to potential “super-spreader” attendees at the United Nations General Assembly in New York City.
“Some of the president’s counterparts who will be in attendance at the U.N. this week have not gotten vaccinated,” a reporter noted at Psaki’s daily briefing. “Some have had Covid in the past. Any pause on sending the president into the U.N. General Assembly chamber and the potential that there could be a super spreader?”
“We obviously take a range of precautions, including ensuring the president is tested — obviously he’s vaccinated, but there’s no intention to change our plans to have him deliver a speech there,” Psaki replied.
Biden is scheduled to deliver his first speech as president to the U.N. on Tuesday. The organization is asking leaders on the honor system to only attend if they have been vaccinated, though Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has openly rejected the guidance. Bolsonaro denies having been vaccinated, though his immunization records are confidential under a 100-year secrecy order.
The U.S. asked world leaders in August to refrain from attending the U.N.’s annual meeting in New York if they could do so virtually, but more than 100 people are still expected to be present for the 78-year-old Biden’s speech.
Watch above via the White House.
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