Jan 21, 2021 - World

World leaders react to "new dawn in America" under Biden administration

President Joe Biden reacts as he delivers his inaugural address on the West Front of the U.S. Capitol on January 20
President Biden reacts delivers his inaugural address on the West Front of the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

World leaders have pledged to work with President Biden on issues including the COVID-19 pandemic and climate change, with many praising his move to begin the formal process for the U.S. to rejoin the Paris Climate Agreement.

The big picture: Several leaders noted the swift shift from former President Trump's "America First" policy to Biden's action to re-engage with the world and rebuild alliances.

What they're saying:

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen told the European Parliament in Brussels, "Once again, after four long years, Europe has a friend in the White House. This new dawn in America is the moment we've been waiting for so long. Europe is ready for a new start with our oldest and most trusted partner."

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who on Friday is due to become the first world leader to speak over the phone with the president, noted the U.S. and Canada's close ties and said he would work with Biden "to make our countries safer, more prosperous, and more resilient."

Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, one of the last leaders to congratulate Biden after his election win, said he's optimistic "there is going to be a good relationship" with the new U.S. president, per AFP.

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, another of the final holdouts to congratulate Biden for his win, noted in a tweet that the relationship of the U.S. and Brazil was "long, solid and based on high values."

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu tweeted that he looked forward to working with Biden to strengthen the U.S.-Israel alliance, "expanding peace between Israel and the Arab world and to confront common challenges, chief among them the threat posed by Iran."

  • Netanyahu issued a separate statement thanking Trump "for all the great things you have done for Israel."

Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani told state television that a "tyrant's era came to an end" with Trump's departure and said "the ball is in Washington's court" in regards to the nuclear deal that the former president withdrew the U.S. from.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who clashed with Trump on several issues, said she looked forward to "a new chapter of German-American friendship and cooperation," according to her spokesperson.

French President Emmanuel Macron tweeted, "We will be stronger to face the challenges of our time. Stronger to build our future. Stronger to protect our planet. Welcome back to the Paris Agreement!"

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson tweeted, "America's leadership is vital on the issues that matter to us all, from climate change to COVID, and I look forward to working with President Biden."

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who had a warm relationship with Trump, said in a Twitter post he looked forward to working with Biden "to strengthen India-US strategic partnership."

Cui Tiankai, China's ambassador to the U.S., tweeted: "China looks forward to working with the new administration to promote sound & steady development of China-U.S. relations and jointly address global challenges in public health, climate change & growth."

(Of note: His tweet came as China slapped sanctions on Trump administration officials including former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who declared Tuesday that China's mass internment and other abuses of over 1 million Muslim minorities in Xinjiang constitutes "genocide" and "crimes against humanity.")

Go deeper