The Hague, Netherlands (WNEW) — At the conclusion of a joint news conference in the Netherlands with Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, President Obama gestured and thanked the crowd as only a single person in the audience responded with a slow, awkward clap.
Responding to a question at The Hague’s for the Nuclear Security Summit, President Obama concluded the event with an anti-climactic few moments in which he looks to Prime Minister Rutte, seemingly expectant of some way to wrap-up the event without applause.
“The good news is that I’m very confident that it can be achieved, and I’m also confident that the core values that America has always believed in, in terms of privacy, rule of law, individual rights; that has guided the United States for many years and will continue to guide us into the future,” Obama concluded, before nodding and looking to Prime Minister Rutte.
Obama is seen nodding at Prime Minister Rutte again, seeking confirmation that the conference has ended he says, “okay.”
Despite only the rustling sounds of people standing to exit, a single person can be heard slowly – but steadily – patting out a few claps to conclude the event.
“Thank you very much everybody, thank you again,” says the president, as he walks off stage with Prime Minister Rutte.
“Okay, ladies and gentlemen, that was the last question. Thank you very much for coming,” an off-screen moderator can be heard saying.
The near non-response from the audience comes amid Guardian reports that President Obama will arrive to the EU and NATO G7 conference in Brussels with a 900-strong entourage that includes 45 vehicles, three planes and a price tag of €10M ($10.4M) for the president’s 24-hour stay. The Guardian also reports that the capital city of the province of South Holland was nearly shut down for the arrival of the 53 world leaders.
The White House has disputed the report, although the administration has not offered its own estimates.