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Business News/ News / World/  'Genocide Joe': Protesters heckle US President Joe Biden during Pennsylvania campaign visit
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'Genocide Joe': Protesters heckle US President Joe Biden during Pennsylvania campaign visit

Demonstrators could be heard shouting, 'No vote for genocide, Joe', while others referred to the president as a ‘loser’ and urged him to 'go home', it said. Sources said Joe Biden left Pennsylvania without delivering his prepared speech.

US President Joe Biden speaks during a visit to Allentown, Pennsylvania on January 12 (Photo by Mandel NGAN / AFP)Premium
US President Joe Biden speaks during a visit to Allentown, Pennsylvania on January 12 (Photo by Mandel NGAN / AFP)

United States President Joe Biden faced vocal opposition during his visit to Pennsylvania on January 12, with protesters expressing discontent over his support for Israel in its conflict with Hamas in Gaza, NDTV reported.

Demonstrators could be heard shouting, "No vote for genocide, Joe," while others referred to the president as a "loser" and urged him to "go home", it said. Sources told the publication that Biden left Pennsylvania without delivering his prepared speech.

Also Read | Red Sea Crisis: Joe Biden warns of more Yemen strikes, Houthis vow continued support for Palestine, shipping costs rise & more. Top 10 Updates

The chants came as the US government has continued to unconditionally back Israel in its war against Hamas, while protestors are demanding a ceasefire in Gaza amid the mounting death toll – overwhelmingly comprising children. On January 11, South Africa dragged Israel to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) over charges of genocide and war crimes against the Palestinians. 

Facing historically low approval ratings, the 81-year-old president finds himself in a competitive position against likely Republican challenger Donald Trump. Recent polls indicate a neck-and-neck race, with Biden's support slipping among Black and ethnic minority voters, a crucial demographic in his 2020 election victory.

Analysts suggest that Biden's best chance lies in a specific metric: the continuation of rising wages outpacing inflation. Since April 2023, this trend has contributed to a perception of fuller wallets among consumers. Despite the challenges, Biden remains focused on economic recovery as a key element of his reelection strategy, the report noted.

This Pennsylvania visit marked Biden's first economy-focused campaign event of 2024, as per the report. Addressing recent inflation concerns, he highlighted the creation of 14 million jobs since taking office but acknowledged the ongoing need to address costs for American families and workers.

Also Read | Ukraine and Israel: How the Biden Administration Sees It

US strikes Yemen for Red Sea attacks

The United States and the United Kingdom on January 11 conducted air strikes against Houthi targets in Yemen for their repeated attacks on vessels moving through the Red Sea. The Houthis said the attacks were in solidarity with Palestine, amid the Israel-Hamas war that has claimed the lives of over 23,000 Gazans since October 2023.

Speaking to reporters in Pennsylvania, Biden called the strikes a success. "Yes. I don’t think there are any civilian casualties, that’s another reason why it’s a success. I’ve already delivered the message to Iran. They know not to do anything. We will make sure that we respond to the Houthis as they continue this outrageous behavior, along with our allies," he said.

Biden also told reporters he considers the Houthi rebels to be a terrorist organization. But there is no move to officially designate them as such he said, adding that it would not have a significant impact.

Also Read | Who are the Houthis and why is the US attacking them?

Upon assuming office, the Biden administration removed a formal designation against the group, citing concerns that associated sanctions could worsen the humanitarian situation in war-torn Yemen. In November, the White House announced a review of this decision after the Houthis seized a cargo ship.

(With inputs from Bloomberg)

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Published: 13 Jan 2024, 01:46 PM IST
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