No, Joe Biden did not fall asleep in meeting with Israeli PM

Claim: A video appears to show US President Joe Biden sleeping during high-level talks with a foreign head of government.

AP’s assessment: False. News coverage of the meeting shows that Biden was awake and engaged during the meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett.

The facts: Biden and Bennett met on Friday to discuss a range of topics, including Covid-19 and Iran’s nuclear capabilities.

Following the discussion, misleading posts circulated on social media claiming that Biden fell asleep during the conversation. A widely shared post shows Biden with his head down and his eyes apparently closed. The caption reads: “Joe Biden appears to have fallen asleep during a meeting with the Prime Minister of Israel”.

But the video is misleading and the description is false. During the 14 minute video taken during the meeting, Biden looks down at his lap several times, including when he’s listening and reading from his notepad. The misleading video is captured in one of these moments, giving the impression that Biden is not attentive.

It was the first face-to-face meeting between the two men since Bennett was sworn-in as prime minister in June.

Bennett arrived at the White House aiming to dissuade Biden from returning to the Iran nuclear deal that was brokered during the Obama administration and later scrapped by President Donald Trump.

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