Aboard Air Force One
En Route Phnom Penh, Cambodia

7:18 A.M. ICT

MS. JEAN-PIERRE:  Hey, everybody. 

Q    Good morning.

MS. JEAN-PIERRE:  Good morning.  Good morning.  

Okay.  So, as you all know, we’re on our way to Cambodia for the U.S.-ASEAN.  I have Jake Sullivan here, National Security Advisor.  He’s going to lay out what we’re going to do and take any questions.

MR. SULLIVAN:  Thanks, everyone.  So, from the very beginning of the administration, the President has said that he was intent on elevating our engagement in the Indo-Pacific.  And he has spent the last nearly two years delivering on that, from elevating the Quad to leaders’ level, to launching the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework, to launching the AUKUS security partnership, to deepening our ties to ASEAN, to, of course, deepening our engagement at every level with our traditional treaty allies.

And he’s coming into this set of summits with that record of accomplishment and purpose behind him.  And he wants to be able to use the next 36 hours to build on that foundation to take American engagement forward and also to deliver on a series of concrete, practical initiatives.

He’ll start with a brief meeting with the 2022 ASEAN chair, the Cambodian Prime Minister, Hun Sen.  Then he will have the U.S.-ASEAN Summit meeting.

As you know, he held an unprecedented ASEAN-U.S. Special Summit in Washington.  And at that meeting, the leaders agreed that they would elevate the U.S.-ASEAN partnership to a comprehensive strategic partnership.  That will happen at this summit.  And they will also announce a series of new initiatives on maritime cooperation, digital connectivity, economic investment, and a range of other issues.  And we’ll have factsheets and the like for you to take a look at those items.

One area that he will particularly focus is on maritime domain awareness.  Along with the Quad leaders, he announced the Indo-Pacific Initiative for Maritime Domain Awareness.  And with ASEAN, what he’s going to do is launch an element of that initiative that focuses on using radio frequencies from commercial satellites to be able to track dark shipping, illegal and unregulated fishing, and also to improve the capacity of the countries of the region to respond to disasters and humanitarian crises.

The President also has been very focused on making sure that we maintain a forward-deployed posture in our defense approach to the region.  And whether it’s the Visiting Forces Agreement with the Philippines or other steps to have the U.S. on the front foot, in terms of defense and security cooperation, that will be on display as well.

And he will discuss with the leaders of ASEAN and of the region the need for freedom of navigation, for lawful unimpeded commerce, and for ensuring that the United States is playing a constructive role in maintaining peace and stability in the region.

While he’s there, he’ll also have the opportunity to hold discussions with both his Japanese and Korean counterparts and also hold a trilateral meeting with them where they’ll be able to discuss broader security issues in the Indo-Pacific and also, specifically, the threats posed by North Korea’s missile and nuclear programs.

So that’s what’s on the docket for the ASEAN meetings and the East Asia Summit.  There, I’m sure, will be other elements on the sidelines.

Ah, yes, one point I actually neglected to mention and would like to before finishing the topper, on Burma — Myanmar: The President will use this opportunity to discuss how we can coordinate more closely to continue to impose costs and raise pressure on the junta in Naypyidaw as they continue to take steps that repress and oppress their citizenry and move that country further away rather than closer to the democratic path it was on before the coup.  So that will be an important topic of conversation in these sessions as well.

Let me stop there and take your questions.

Q    Jake, if we could just take you back to Sharm and the President’s bilat with President El-Sisi.  Can you talk about the human rights discussion?  Was the President surprised to hear President Sisi bring up human rights first?  And what did you read into that?  And then, does — did the President speak about raising the case of Alaa Abd El-Fattah directly?  And does the U.S. have an update on his current health status?

MR. SULLIVAN:  The President and President Sisi had an extended discussion on the issue of human rights.  The President directed his team to work with the Egyptians on a number of specific cases, one of them being that case.

We had intensive consultations on that case while we were on the ground in Sharm, and I’m not going to go further on the record on that because we are doing everything we can to secure his release, as well as the release of a number of other political prisoners.

I do not have an update on his condition for you at the time.  You know, the Egyptians have one story on this; obviously, his family has a totally different story.  And this is a circumstance where it’s not “trust but verify”; it’s — it’s “verify.”  And we’ve not been able to do that.

Q    Jake, I have a question.  At the briefing on Thursday, you spoke about North Korea — your current sense around, you know, them carrying out long-range missile tests or nuclear tests during ASEAN, G20.  When the President meets with President Xi, is he asking him to, you know, talk about North Korea, step in and sort of, you know, help out with the situation?

MR. SULLIVAN:  The President will certainly raise the issue of North Korea with the Chinese President, but not from the point of view of being a demandeur of any kind.

He’s going to tell President Xi his perspective, which is that North Korea represents a threat not just to the United States, not just to the ROK and Japan, but to peace and stability across the entire region.  And if North Korea keeps going down this road, it will simply mean further enhanced American military and security presence in the region. 

And so the PRC has an interest in playing a constructive role in restraining North Korea’s worst tendencies.  Whether they choose to do so or not is, of course, up to them.

Q    You’ve been on calls with the President and President — President Biden and President Xi in the past.  Has President Biden ever raised North Korea in this context with President Xi in the past?

MR. SULLIVAN:  Of course.  They’ve had multiple discussions about the DPRK since President Biden has been President.  And I would go on to say nearly countless discussions on the DPRK going back to their engagements when President Biden was Vice President.

So they’ve had the chance to speak at a strategic level on this topic repeatedly.  Of course, the operational situation is more acute in the current moment because of the pace of these missile tests and because of the looming threat of a potential nuclear test — seventh nuclear test.  But the President sees this as quite familiar ground that he will be treading with President Xi when they meet in Bali.

Q    President Biden is spending quite a bit of time on this trip meeting with authoritarian leaders who don’t share the United States’ democratic values.  Why was it so important to him to focus on engaging with those leaders on this trip?

MR. SULLIVAN:  Well, I mean, let’s start with the fact that the President felt it was very important to attend some highly consequential summits this year.  The first of those summits was COP27.  COP27 was hosted by Egypt.  The President was proud and pleased to have the opportunity to engage with the host of that summit, the President of Egypt.

The second summit is hosted by Cambodia.  The host of that summit is the Prime Minister of Cambodia, so he’s engaging with him.

The third summit is hosted by Indonesia, the G20.  That’s a democratically elected leader, Joko Widodo.

So he’s meeting with the host of each of the summits that he’s attendingAnd then he will also, as I said at the podium the other day, be meeting with his European counterparts, including the UK and Italian prime ministers.  He’s meeting, of course, as I just mentioned, in Phnom Penh with his ROK and Japanese counterparts.

So he will have plenty of opportunity to engage deeply with core democratic allies.  But he’s going to engage across the board in service of America’s interests and to advance America’s strategic position and our values.  And that’s what guides his decision on every leader he chooses to engage with.

Q    Jake, on El-Fattah, you said that that prisoner came up during the discussion, but was it President Biden who brought it up or did Sisi bring it up?  And was Biden calling specifically on his release?  You wouldn’t get into, I think, his condition —


Q    — but is there anything that you can get into in terms of what the U.S. is requesting specifically of Sisi on that case?

MR. SULLIVAN:  The U.S. is requesting his release.  We’ve made no bones about that.  President Sisi first raised human rights not just in his opening comments before the press, but in his opening presentation in the meeting.  President Biden responded.  President Biden explained why it is that these issues are very important to the United States.  And as I said, he then directed his team to work through a set of individual cases.  We’re the ones who raised the cases, not the Egyptians.  And we worked through them. 

There is a question about the extent to which trying to resolve these cases diplomatically is best done through public pressure or through private engagement.  That’s a constant debate, a constant calibration.  So I can say emphatically that we believe that Alaa Abd El-Fattah should be released. 

But in terms of talking through the specifics of our discussions with the Egyptians, I’d like to leave those behind closed doors for the moment.

Q    Jake, on the trilateral, can you just talk a little bit more about what you hope or expect to get out of it?  Any deliverables that you can share?  What does success look like?

MR. SULLIVAN:  When you’re talking about close allies like this, deliverables is usually not quite the right construct because we just do so much together every single day. 

But what we would really like to see is enhanced trilateral security cooperation where the three countries are all coming together — where that triangle, in a way, is getting smaller and smaller — between Japan, ROK, United States.  That’s acutely true with respect to the DPRK because of the common threat and challenge we all face, but it’s also true, more broadly, about our capacity to work together to enhance overall peace and stability in the region.

I do expect that there will be a statement that comes out of that meeting.  That’s not a foregone conclusion, but it’s my expectation.  And that — that statement will actually set out an elevated level of engagement — trilateral engagement between our three countries.

You guys know well, of course, that there are a number of issues that the ROK and Japan constantly grapple with bilaterally.  It’s really our goal, from the U.S.’s perspective,
to ensure that at a trilateral level we are maximizing our capacity to work together on critical security.

Q    Following up on that meeting —

Q    On China — if I can just have one quick one on China.  Just — just a follow-up (inaudible.)

Q    How much of that discussion will be centered around President Biden’s meeting with Xi, following — in the following days, though? 

MR. SULLIVAN:  It’s a great question.  One thing that President Biden certainly wants to do with our closest allies is preview what he intends to do and also ask the leaders of the ROK and Japan, “What would you like me to raise?  What do you want me to go in with?”  That’s the kind of style that he takes to his engagement with the PRC generally and with Xi specifically.

So it will be a topic, but it will not be the main event of the trilateral.

Q    On your discussion with Xi, President Biden said that what he really wants to find out is what are his red lines.  I guess my question is: Don’t you kind of already know what China’s red lines are, particularly as it relates to Taiwan?

MR. SULLIVAN:  We frequently say, almost to the point where it’s catechism, that there’s no substitute for leader-to-leader engagement.  But it’s not just a talking point for us; we really mean it.  And that’s particularly true when it comes to the PRC, because there is no one else in their system who can really communicate authoritatively other than Xi Jinping. 

And so, having the two presidents actually be able to sit face-to-face, and not face-to-face with a video screen between them, for the first time in President Biden’s presidency, it just takes the conversation to a different level strategically and allows the leaders to explore in deeper detail what each of them see in terms of their intentions and priorities.

So, I do believe that there will be important clarifications — a sharpening of our understanding of the PRC perspective and a sharpening of their understanding of ours — in this meeting.  And that’s really what this meeting is about.  It’s not about deliverables or trying to produce some joint statement.  It’s about the leaders coming to a better understanding and then tasking their teams to do intensive work to come back for further engagements between the leaders.

I think the President views this as not the end of the line, but rather the start of a series of engagements that will also include further leader-to-leader meetings down the road.

Q    Jake, can I ask a follow-up to your comments about
Elon Musk in the briefing the other day?  You referred things to CFIUS.  Obviously, that was the context of the question that was asked to the President.  So I’m wondering: Are you aware of an actual investigation at CFIUS into — or a look at CFIUS into the Twitter deal? 

And the President’s comments seemed broader, beyond just CFIUS.  And I’m wondering if you’re aware of or that the White House would want a review by NASA or the Pentagon, any contractor that deals with Elon Musk, based on his foreign relationships that the President referenced. 

MR. SULLIVAN:  I have not spoken with anyone in any agency about anything to do with regulatory action involving Twitter or Musk, so I really just don’t have anything for you on that. 

Q    And can I just ask, on the Xi meeting: It seemed to come together — well, there was a lot of talk about it, a lot of uncertainty, and then came together after his congress.  Can you talk — give a little bit of a tick-tock of how the meeting came together on your guys’ end? 

MR. SULLIVAN:  Yeah.  There was reporting along the way that somehow we were pushing for it and the PRC was resisting.  And we said all along, when those stories would come out, that it’s simply not true.  Because what was happening was actually several weeks of intensive preparation for the meeting between the two teams, both over video and over phone.  And it was just a matter of trying to work out simple things like scheduling and then more consequential things like what the agenda would look like. 

And the idea always was to get an agenda agreed, get a time agreed, get all of the elements agreed, and then announce the meeting just in the — in the few days leading up to it.  So we had already, basically, in our heads — a month ago or longer — this was going to happen.  It was just a matter of working that out.

Q    So you don’t think the timing of the announcement had
anything to do with the election?

MR. SULLIVAN:  No.  Although if that makes us strategic geniuses or something, I’ll take it. 

Q    No, I meant them agreeing to the meeting had —

MR. SULLIVAN:  No.  No. 

Q    — nothing to do with the timing?

MR. SULLIVAN:  No.  No.  No.  No. 

Q    You mentioned in your topper freedom of navigation, fish- — efforts to crackdown on illegal fishery — fishing in the region.  Obviously, those are all things that pertain to China.  Can you speak broadly about how the first parts of this trip sort of set the President up for that bilat?  How much is China’s activities in the region and threats to other nations in the region sort of a factor?  And how does that boost the President’s leverage when he goes to meet with Xi Jinping on Monday, face-to-face? 

MR. SULLIVAN:  I mean, look, it is certainly the case that the countries of the region do not want conflict or confrontation between the major powers.  But they also very much want U.S. presence — forward-deployed presence in the region.  And the reason they want that is because they see the United States as an important anchor of peace and stability, and that includes ensuring that there is freedom of navigation.  It includes ensuring that these countries are better equipped to be able to handle things like illegal fishing.  And also, it ensures that no country can engage in the kind of sustained intimidation and coercion that would be fundamentally adverse to the nations of ASEAN and other countries.

So there is no doubt that the President comes in with a meaningful value proposition to the rest of the region that says, “The United States is a resident Pacific power.  We played a critical role in the past.  We play a critical role today.  And we have every intention of doing so in the future.”  And there’s a real demand signal for that.  I think the PRC may not love that fact, but they certainly acknowledge it and understand it.  And that’s some of the context for the meeting on Monday with Xi.

Q    Jake, coming out of the climate conference, the President spoke at length about his goals there.  Are there any specific climate commitments that he is seeking from
President Xi when he sits down with him, considering this as an area of cooperation that you have identified?

MR. SULLIVAN:  He will, having just consulted with Secretary Kerry on the ground in Sharm, go into this meeting with a kind of specific set of thoughts around climate.  But I’m going to leave that to the meeting and see where we are after in terms of reading it out, because I don’t want to get ahead of him being able to talk to Xi about it.

Q    Jake, MBS — is there — is he — do you guys know if he’s going to be at — in Bali?  Like, are there other engagements that you guys are expecting, including MBS, if he’s there?  I don’t know if he’s — he’s had some condition, and I don’t know if he’s traveling.

MR. SULLIVAN:  I think he is going, but I don’t know for certain.  So I guess you’d have to check in with the Saudi government.  We don’t have any plans to have a sit-down meeting with MBS.

I said at the podium that we were likely to end up with other bilateral engagements as we go forward.  There’s a number of other leaders.  There’s Scholz and Macron and Modi and Erdoğan and Albanese.

And, you know, so my guess is as particularly the two days of Bali unfold, the odds of additional meetings that we notice to you will rise.

Q    Before you go, there was a lot of flight time on this
leg.  How did the President spend it?  Was able to get any sleep?

MR. SULLIVAN:  I’ll defer you to Karine on that.

MS. JEAN-PIERRE:  Oh, my gosh.  (Laughs.)

Q    Will he also —

MR. SULLIVAN:  I don’t talk about the President’s comings and goings on the plane.

Q    One last one.  We’ve seen some more — the Russian pull-out in the Kherson region sort of play out on the ground over the last 24, 48 hours.  Has there been any U.S.-Ukrainian contact, discussion, now after that pull-out — engagement regarding negotiations and, you know, sort of — everyone sort of taking their time over the winter to assess their situation for negotiation?

MR. SULLIVAN:  So, I’ve obviously seen a number of press stories on this topic, and I thank you for the opportunity to lay down what I think are the four core elements of consensus in the U.S. government and, fundamentally, what President Biden believes about this question.

The first is: He said in the press conference it’s up to Ukraine to decide when and how they want to negotiate.  Nothing about Ukraine without Ukraine.  We’re not going to pressure them; we’re not going to dictate to them.

The second is that we believe in a just peace based on the principles of sovereignty and territorial integrity that are not things we made up but that are embedded in the U.N. Charter.  The G7 leaders spoke to these principles of a just peace, including territorial integrity.  President Zelenskyy has spoken to these.

The third point is that Russia is doubling down on its “annexation,” quote, unquote — annexation of Ukrainian territory.  That’s not exactly a sign of seriousness about negotiating.  As long as Russia holds the position that it simply gets to grab as much territory as it wants by force, it’s hard to see them as a good-faith counterparty in a negotiation.

And the fourth and final point is that the U.S. approach remains the same today as it was six months ago, which is we’re going to do everything we can, including our announcement, our military announcement — our military security assistance announcement yesterday — to put Ukraine in the best possible position on the battlefield so that when they make their determination to proceed, they’re in the best possible position at the negotiating table.

And one more big-ticket item.  So there’s kind of this sense of when is Ukraine going to negotiate.  Okay, ultimately, at a 30,000-foot level, Ukraine is the party of peace in this conflict, and Russia is the party of war.  Russia invaded Ukraine.  If Russia chose to stop fighting in Ukraine and left, it would be the end of the war.  If Ukraine chose to stop fighting and give up, it would be the end of Ukraine.

So this whole notion, I think, in the Western press of “When is Ukraine going to negotiate?” misses the underlying fundamentals, which is that Russia continues, even as recently as the last 24 hours, to make these outlandish claims about annexed Russian territory — quote, unquote, “Russian territory” — including territory they just left.

So in that context, our position remains the same as it has been, and fundamentally is in close consultation and support of President Zelenskyy and Ukraine.  And that is shared across the U.S. government.

Q    Can I follow up on that, on Ukraine?  Regarding Kherson city, at the briefing you gave, you expressed reservations — “Let’s wait and see what actually happens,” the evidence. 


Q    Is that still your position now, or do you feel like this is real?  And if so, can you talk about the significance of that?

MR. SULLIVAN:  I think you’ve heard enough from me to know that — over the last months — to know that I express permanent reservations about everything.  So I, personally, will not be fully confident that there’s been a complete pull-out of Kherson on the right bank of the Dnieper River until we land and I can call back secure and hear for certain. 

But it does look as though the Russians have executed this withdrawal.  And it does look as though the Ukrainians have just won an extraordinary victory where the one regional capital that Russia had seized in this war is now back under a Ukrainian flag.  And that is quite a remarkable thing. 

And it has broader strategic implications as well, because being able to push the Russians across the river means that the longer-term threat to places like Odessa and the Black Sea coastline are reduced from where they were before. 

And so this is a big moment.  And it’s certainly not the end of the line, but it’s a big moment.  And it’s due to the incredible tenacity and skill of the Ukrainians, backed by the relentless and united support of the United States and our allies.

Cool.  Thank you, guys.

Q    Thank you, Jake.


Q    Hi.  (Laughs.)

MS. JEAN-PIERRE:  Okay, what do you guys got?  I don’t have — I don’t have anything else to add.  What do you guys have?

Q    Can you confirm that the — that the President, through the Secretary of Homeland Security, has directed the chairman of Customs — of CBP to either resign or be fired in the coming week?  And why is that?

MS. JEAN-PIERRE:  So, I’ve seen — we’ve seen those reports.  I just — I’m not going to comment on that from here at this time.

Q    Are you denying that?

MS. JEAN-PIERRE:  I’m just not going to comment on it at this time.

Q    Is the President — does the President have confidence in his director of CBP?
MS. JEAN-PIERRE:  The President has confidence in — in folks that he’s appointed — right? — the director of CBP.  I just am not going to — I’m just not going to comment on the reporting.
Q    Why not?  Obviously, there’s — this is something —

MS. JEAN-PIERRE:  Yeah, I hear you.  I’m just not going to comment on it.  I’ve seen the reporting.  Just not going to comment from here.  I would — if you want more, I would refer you to the Department of Homeland Security.

Q    But you said the President does have confidence in this individual?

MS. JEAN-PIERRE:  I just don’t have more.  I’ve seen the reporting.  I’m just not going to comment on it.

Q    And on a different topic.  Student loans, obviously, stalled up by a federal judge the other day.  You put out a statement on this.  Any new federal government action now — since, you know, we’ve been in the air for 24 hours or so now — on this?

MS. JEAN-PIERRE:  As you mentioned, Zeke, I put out a statement on this when we were leaving for Egypt.  So we strongly disagree with this baseless decision, and the Department of Justice is appealing it.

While we appeal, the Department of Education will hold on to the information of the 26 million Americans already being considered for debt relief.

We’re confident that this baseless decision will be overturned.  And when it is, we will quickly process relief for the millions who have already applied.

We will never stop fighting for hardworking Americans, middle-class Americans most in need.  As we have said many times before, no matter how much — how many roadblocks or oppoi- — opponents and special interests try to put in the way, we’re going to continue to fight.

Q    Sorry, one last one from me.  We’re just — one last one.  We’re just getting close to the end of the year when that student debt relief pause is supposed to — supposed to come to an end.  Now with this — with this court ruling, there’s a lot of uncertainty.  Will the President commit to extending a pause on student debt repayment for people who have applied to this program and now that’s been held up?

MS. JEAN-PIERRE:  So we are confident that this is going to get resolved.  I don’t have anything new to announce.  But we’re going — we’re confident that we will get this resolved soon.

Q    Karine, quick —

Q    Just a follow-up on that, Karine.

Q    — quick question.  Sorry, go ahead.

Q    Just to follow up on that — December 31st is fast approaching.  Should people who have student loans that are applying for this program, should they be prepared to start repaying those on December 31st?  That’s significant planning they need to make.

MS. JEAN-PIERRE:  I totally understand.  I get your question.  Again, we think we will prevail.  And I just don’t have anything new to announce on that.

Q    A quick one on the Twitter layoffs, Karine.  We’re seeing mass layoffs in the company.  Obviously, the President is the most pro-worker President in the history of the United States.  Has he asked his Labor Department to look at this?  Is the NLRB looking at this?  What kind of investigations are — is the White House asking for?

MS. JEAN-PIERRE:  So we’ve seen the reporting.  I was asked about this on Thursday.  So we’re aware of the layoffs from Meta and other — and other tech companies. 

Look, more broadly speaking, I don’t have anything to share about any — any — any investigation or anything alike.

But, more broadly speaking, the most recent jobs and CPI report suggests that the economy continues to grow and add jobs, and Americans are beginning to see a much-needed break in inflation.  And we think that’s important as well.  But don’t have anything to share.  But, again, we’ve seen the reporting.

Q    Karine, the President was only on the ground for a few hours in Sharm.  Why did the White House think it was worth it for him to go there?

MS. JEAN-PIERRE:  Well, as you know, it was the COP27, which was hosted by Egypt.  Jake has laid out why this — this particular summit was important.  He talked about it on Tuesday, and he talked about it a little bit today.

Look, I — it was important for the leader of the United States, the President of the United States, to attend, to be there for COP27.  And you heard him talk in very great detail about our commitment — our commitment to climate change and the work that we’re doing and how we’re being a leader in that role, in that — in that realm.

And so, again, it was an important stop for the President to make.  You heard him; you saw how the reaction of him being there.  And now we’re going to head to — to Cambodia to continue the rest of — the rest of this trip.

Q    How are you feeling?

MS. JEAN-PIERRE:  Oh, my gosh.  I actually — I actually feel —

Q    Your voice is still (inaudible) same.

MS. JEAN-PIERRE:  I know.  I actually feel much better than I sound.  So — but thank you for asking.  I think it’s part of, like, when you go, go, go of the campaign season, right?

Q    Just because we’ve been in the air, there was a call that was read out to Tina Kotek that the President made.  Has he made any other calls to politicians since we’ve been in flight?

MS. JEAN-PIERRE:  I don’t have any other calls outside of that to read out.  We’ve been — I think you would agree we’ve been pretty good at reading out calls that he’s made after — after Tuesday’s elections.  We’ll continue to do that.

Tina Kotek — as you know, he went out there a couple times over the last couple of — couple of months.  They’ve developed a very good relationship.  And, as you know, he called to congratulate her.  And she also made history, along with Maura Healey in Massachusetts.  And so, very proud of that win.

Q    And he did call J.B. Pritzker, and he also called Governor Whitmer and a few others.  Does he have any plans to call Governor Newsom?

MS. JEAN-PIERRE:  I don’t have any calls to preview at this time.  But he saw — as you know, he saw Governor Newsom very recently when he was there.  But I don’t have any calls at this time.
Q    Karine, just to pick up on Fran’s question from before, can you give us a readout of how the President has been spending his time while we’ve been traveling the world?

MS. JEAN-PIERRE:  Let’s see.  What — it was a nine-hour flight?  So he had an opportunity to — to talk to his team.  As you know, Secretary Blinken is on — is on the plane, as well as Jake, our National Security Advisor.  Had an opportunity to check in with his team, talk about the next couple of days.

This is an important trip.  You know, this is an important trip, as we talk about the Indo-Pacific, as we talk about the issues at hand, as we talk about this upcoming meeting that he’s going to have with President Xi.  This is an important — as we talk about COP27.

And so he’s been meeting with his team, talking about the next couple of days.  And — and, you know, I don’t have much more to share on that.
Q    Is there anything else that you can tell us about his day when he gets there?  He has about seven hours of downtime before his first meeting.

MS. JEAN-PIERRE:  I don’t have anything else to share.  If we do, certainly we will — we’ll read that out.  You know, it’s going to be an important day, an important trip.  And you’ll hear more from us.  And also, as you know, he’ll be having other bilateral meetings that we’ll share out once we have those locked in.

Thanks for thinking about my health.  Appreciate it.  (Laughter.)

All right, guys, thanks.  See you on the ground.

7:49 A.M. ICT 

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