President Biden on Sunday left Seoul for Japan, kicking off the second leg of his first presidential trip to Asia.
When asked prior to his departure what message he had for North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, Biden offered up a simple, "Hello ... period," a response perhaps reflecting his administration's "so-far-unsuccessful attempts at restarting diplomacy with Pyongyang," CNN writes. South Korean and American intelligence had indicated North Korea to be planning a nuclear or missile test coinciding with Biden's visit.
And before stepping aboard Air Force One, the president said the U.S. is looking into available vaccines for monkeypox, a relatively rare, small pox-like virus that's been detected in a number of countries where it is not endemic. "We're working on it hard to figure out what we do and what vaccine if any might be available for it," Biden told reporters, noting that advisers "haven't told me the level of exposure yet, but it is something that everybody should be concerned about."
Subscribe to The Week
Escape your echo chamber. Get the facts behind the news, plus analysis from multiple perspectives.
"It is a concern in that if it were to spread it would be consequential," he added.
So far, the World Health Organization says it has been notified of 92 lab-confirmed monkeypox cases and 28 suspected cases in the U.S., Canada, Australia, and some European countries. Israel and Switzerland, which aren't on the WHO's list, reported their first confirmed cases on Saturday, notes The Washington Post.
Biden landed in Tokyo early Sunday evening, local time.
Continue reading for free
We hope you're enjoying The Week's refreshingly open-minded journalism.
Subscribed to The Week? Register your account with the same email as your subscription.