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How leaders around the world are reacting to Biden’s win

American presidential elections always draw intense interest globally. This year, Joe Biden’s win was met with an array of reactions, from elation to wariness to silence. The president-elect has already spoken with allies from Europe, Japan and South Korea -- but he has yet to hear from American adversaries including China, North Korea and Russia. Nick Schifrin reports.

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  • Judy Woodruff:

    American presidential elections always draw great and intense interest globally, and this year's vote was no different.

    Joe Biden's win has been met with a variety of reactions, elation in some regions, wariness in others, and some silence so far from American adversaries.

    Here's Nick Schifrin.

  • Nick Schifrin:

    In the part of the world perhaps most excited for president-elect Biden, the Irish celebrated their luck. After four years of America first, Western Europe expressed hope for change.

  • Angela Merkel (through translator):

    Joe Biden has decades of experience in domestic and foreign policy. He knows Germany and Europe well.

  • Nick Schifrin:

    Many European leaders have worked with Biden and share his day one priorities, reentering the Paris climate accord, extending the New START treaty with Russia, and rejoining the World Health Organization.

    Among Biden's first phone calls were European allies, including French President Emmanuel Macron.

  • Emmanuel Macron (through translator):

    I really wanted to congratulate you and congratulate Kamala Harris for this election.

  • Nick Schifrin:

    In Britain, Prime Minister Boris Johnson has been a Trump ally. And Biden has rejected Brexit.

    Yesterday, Johnson expressed relief Biden emphasized shared values in their call.

  • Boris Johnson:

    It was refreshing, I may say, to have that conversation. I look forward to many more.

  • Nick Schifrin:

    Biden's second round of calls were with East Asian allies, including South Korean President Moon Jae-in and Japan's new prime minister, Yoshihide Suga.

  • Yoshihide Suga (through translator):

    He said that he looks forward to strengthening the U.S.-Japan alliance and working together on achieving peace and stability in the Indo-Pacific region.

  • Nick Schifrin:

    That phrase, the Indo-Pacific, was coined by Japan, but expanded by the Trump administration to counter China.

    The administration, with bipartisan support, increased operations in the Pacific and accelerated regional cooperation, including with Australia, whose prime minister, Scott Morrison, also talked with Biden.

  • Scott Morrison:

    We agreed that there was no more critical time for both this alliance between ourselves and the United States, but, more broadly, the working together especially of like-minded countries.

  • Nick Schifrin:

    Less like-minded, Middle East leaders. The Trump administration facilitated accords between Israel and three Sunni Arab countries.

  • President Donald Trump:

    I am announcing today that the United States will withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal.

  • Nick Schifrin:

    It pulled out of the Iran nuclear deal to press confrontation with Iran.

    On Saturday, after the U.S. media declared Biden president-elect, Saudi leaders tweeted congratulations to the new president of Tanzania. The kingdom waited until late Sunday to congratulate Biden.

    Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu claimed Trump's policies would continue.

  • Benjamin Netanyahu (through translator):

    I welcome the fact that my friend Joe Biden and with him, Kamala Harris, welcomed those agreements.

  • Nick Schifrin:

    But Biden has vowed to restart negotiations to reenter the Iran nuclear agreement and withdraw support for the Saudi-led war in Yemen.

    Meanwhile, those who haven't congratulated Biden? Latin American populists Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador in Mexico and Jair Bolsonaro in Brazil, as well as North Korea's Kim Jong-un, Russian President Vladimir Putin, and Chinese President Xi Jinping.

    In China, a cautious response and low expectations, as special correspondent Patrick Fok reports.

  • Patrick Fok:

    Burnished autumn leaves are a sign of changing times in Beijing. But, as the U.S. prepares for a new era of leadership under Joe Biden, people here are sure about one thing. There will be no seasonal shift in relations between China and America.

    Beijing's yet to acknowledge Joe Biden's victory, but there has been a change in tone from Chinese media. The state-run Global Times offered this view on Wednesday, saying the president-elect would be more cooperative than Trump.

    What we have been seeing here in the press over the last few days is a focus on a chaotic situation in the U.S. I have got a copy of The Global Times here from a few days ago, with one article titled "Analysts Predict Final Madness in U.S.-China Policy in Last Days of Trump Presidency."

  • Nick Schifrin:

    Patrick Fok in Beijing.

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