In a greeting that was likened in one media account to the kind bestowed upon “visiting royalty,” Saudi Arabia welcomed President Donald Trump, first lady Melania Trump and their entourage Saturday.
— Onlinemagazin (@OnlineMagazin) May 20, 2017
As reported by The Washington Post, “Trump, his wife, Melania, and an entourage including virtually his entire senior White House staff and much of his Cabinet, were serenaded by military bands, treated to a flyover of Saudi jets, feted in opulent palaces and given the undivided attention of King Salman.”
The 81-year-old king appeared at the airport in Riyadh to welcome the Trumps, and cast custom to the winds as he did so.
As Melania Trump set foot on Saudi soil, the king shook her hand, a gesture that shattered Muslim traditions in which men do not shake the hands of women.
The act did not go unnoticed.
— Deplorable❤Kathleen (@hillx123) May 20, 2017
@LeahR77 Melania did the respected thing with the nice pant suit, no scarf needed, and she waited for them to extend a handshake. Great First Lady!
— Shirl Guidry (@shirl_guidry) May 20, 2017
One commentator noted that coupled with the refusal of Melania and Ivanka Trump to wear headscarves, it was a very non-traditional start to the Saudi leg of Trump’s first foreign trip as president.
“As usual, the mainstream media is falling all over themselves to report the best criticisms they can come up with. Funny enough, the widespread obsession with critiquing the president has the media missing the real story on this one,” wrote Mary Kate Knorr on Young Conservatives.
“The Saudi Arabian King shook Melania’s hand. The Quran forbids Muslim men from shaking hands with women. And Muslims are kinda pissed about it,” she added.
According to the Quran and Hadiths, Muslim men strictly forbidden to shake hands with non-Musim women. The King must be a special Muslim? pic.twitter.com/OKNI2wF85v
— Blazing Fury (@FuryBlazing) May 20, 2017
Melania and Ivanka Trump did make a concession to Muslim dress codes and wore clothes that almost entirely covered them. Melania Trump wore a sleeved black robe top with pants and a gold belt while Ivanka Trump wore a black-and-white dress with long sleeves.
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