After four days of anxious anticipation, the results of the US presidential election finally hit newstands around the world on Sunday morning as media outlets praised Donald Trump’s defeat while warning of foreign policy changes to come under Joe Biden.
Sunday’s newspaper headlines from the UK to Kenya to Australia were chock full of congratulations for Biden and his running mate Kamala Harris, who will become the United States’ first female, and first black, vice president.
‘A new dawn for America’, read the headline of The Independent in Britain, showing a photo of Biden standing next to Harris and noting her historic achievement.
The Sunday Times went with a picture of a black woman draped in the US flag and the headline: ‘Sleepy Joe wakes up America’, taunting Trump with his own derogatory nickname for Biden.
And the left-leaning Observer went simply with ‘It’s Joe’ over an image of the smiling Democrat.
Many papers also included photos of a dejected-looking Trump, who has refused to accept the loss and insisted that voter fraud occurred.
A few conservative media outlets in the Middle East focused on unfounded reports of fraud in their coverage, with some questioning challenges that Biden could pose to them.
After four days of anxious anticipation, the results of the US presidential election finally hit newstands around the world on Sunday morning as media outlets praised Donald Trump’s defeat while warning of foreign policy changes to come under Joe Biden. Pictured: Newspapers are arranged on a shelf in Kenya on Sunday morning
Biden was named the next president at 11.25am Saturday morning by television networks and the Associated Press, while Trump played a round of golf at his course in Virginia.
CNN, NBC, ABC, CBS, the AP and USA Today all made the call and Fox News followed suit 10 minutes later as votes in Philadelphia pushed Biden’s margin in the crucial swing state of Pennsylvania over the edge.
This took the former vice president to 273 electoral votes – over the 270 needed to win the White House race.
Trump reacted with fury, claiming Biden was trying to ‘falsely pose’ as the winner and vowing to keep challenging results he claims are a ‘fraud’ as he appeared glum on his return to the White House.
The international press seized on Trump’s poor response to his apparent loss. Germany’s mass-market Bild newspaper carried a photo of Trump with the headline: ‘Exit without decency’.
‘What a liberation, what a relief’, said the left-leaning Sueddeutsche Zeitung broadsheet.
But it noted that Biden ‘inherits a heavy burden’ like nothing faced by his predecessors, and warned that Trump accepting defeat was ‘unthinkable’.
In Australia, the Daily Telegraph tabloid owned by Rupert Murdoch’s media empire also focused on Trump’s expected defiance against ‘a foe he perceived to be feeble and barely worth turning up to fight’.
Iran’s ultraconservative papers celebrated the downfall of Trump, a leader who has applied ‘maximum pressure’ and punishing sanctions since his 2018 withdrawal from a landmark nuclear agreement.
Still, they reserved little warmth for Biden. ‘The maskless enemy left, the masked enemy arrived,’ warned conservative publication Resalat.
A man reads a morning newspaper showing Biden and Harris at a stall in Pakistan’s Lahore
People read an extra edition of a newspaper with Biden’s face prominently displayed in Tokyo
Another theme was the false claim of voter fraud with the ultraconservative Vatan-e Emrooz, seemingly before the Biden win was announced, headlined on ‘The graveyard of democracy’, and focused on false allegations.
Similarly, Egypt’s government daily al-Akhbar used a long editorial to zero in on the – unfounded – ‘violations’ of fraudulent voting, and said that ‘it is time for the United States to stop giving us lessons in democracy’.
In Saudi Arabia, the only Gulf country yet to comment on the result, pro-government online newspaper Okaz wondered if Biden would persist with Trump’s close ties to the kingdom.
The kingdom’s pan-Arab Asharq al-Awsat paper urged Biden to continue a ‘period of economic prosperity and stability in security’ for the Middle East.
Turkey’s mainstream dailies were muted. Major paper Hurriyet ran a small frontpage news story on the result, along with a piece titled: ‘Trump went golfing’.
One pro-government newspaper, Sabah, did not even report on Biden’s victory until page 10, with an opposition daily also running one small front-page election story.
Brazil’s leading media outlets reported Trump’s defeat in the context of its own populist leader, Jair Bolsonaro, who has similarly sought to diminish democratic institutions and reject science-based facts.
A man browses a newspaper in Sudan’s capital Khartoum with a smiling photo of Biden and a disappointed snap of Trump
A man holds up a copy of Israeli newspaper Israel Hayom with Biden proudly grinning
‘Trump’s defeat punishes the attacks against civilisation, it is a lesson for Bolsonaro,’ wrote Folha de Sao Paulo, one of Brazil’s major daily newspapers.
‘May Brazil’s leaders seize the spirit of the times – or die, like Trump.’
Spain’s center-right El Mundo newspaper said Biden’s win was a goodbye to Trump’s populism, and described Harris as a ‘symbol of renewal’.
Sweden’s biggest daily, Dagens Nyheter, headlined its opinion-editorial piece: ‘Bittersweet victory – Biden will struggle to heal the US’.
It described Biden’s vow of a return to normalcy as ‘mission impossible’ in a ‘deeply divided country’.
Conservative Svenska Dagbladet daily warned of the dangers posed by the millions of Americans who will continue to believe Trump’s rhetoric of a stolen election.
‘Election is over – but conflict continues,’ read its headline.
On a lighter note, the Ayrshire Daily News, whose patch covers the Trump Turnberry golf course in Scotland, took a more local look at the result.
‘South Ayrshire golf club owner loses 2020 presidential election,’ read its headline.
President Donald Trump learned he lost the election while playing golf on Saturday. He is seen returning to the White House, where he was met by a mocking crowd of Biden supporters
Biden delivered his victory speech in Wilmington, Delaware on Saturday after the election was finally called in his favor following a four-day ballot counting process
Meanwhile newspapers in the US also, predictably, focused their headlines on Biden’s victory, and the speech he gave on Saturday night.
The 77-year-old president-elect took to the stage in Wilmington, Delaware, after being introduced by Harris, his running mate.
‘The people have delivered us a clear victory,’ he told cheering crowd that had driven in to congratulate him.
Biden called on Americans to come together after the election, making an appeal to Trump voters and offering a message of hope and sympathy to those who have suffered from the coronavirus pandemic and its resulting affect on the economy.
‘We’re seeing all over the nation, cities across the country, indeed across the world outpouring of joy and hope and renewed faith,’ Biden said in his address.
‘Tomorrow will bring a better day. And I’m humbled by the trust and confidence you’ve placed in me. I pledge to be a president who seeks not to divide but unify. Who doesn’t see red states and blue states. Only sees the United States.’
America’s biggest newspapers bore headlines including: ‘Biden, Harris, and History’, ‘Joebilation’ and ‘It’s Joe Time’ on Sunday morning.
Local papers took a more personal touch. The Sunday Times in Scranton, Pennsylvania, where Biden was born, wrote: ‘Made in PA,’ along with a feature about his rise to the White House.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution in Georgia, where the presidential race has gone to recount after a razor-thin margin on the first tally, wrote: ‘After a long week, a new president.’