In spite of the reports that Ahmed Mohamed is nothing more than a liar and a fraud, and while President Obama did not make him the center of attention at an astronomy event at the WH on Monday, he still took the time for a photo op with him.
The president made brief remarks at the White House’s “Astronomy Night” before peering through a telescope and visiting briefly with a few of the attendees.
“We have to encourage those glimmers of curiosity,” Obama said during his remarks which highlighted the scientific curiosities of children around the country, but he did not refer to Mohamed’s experience.
According to the White House press pool, Ahmed Mohamed was in the third row of the audience.
White House reporters confirmed on Twitter that he spoke with Obama briefly as he shook the president’s hand.
In September, President Obama invited Mohamed to the White House after hearing about his detainment by law enforcement, posting an encouraging message to the student on Twitter.
Mohamed willingly accepted the invitation to visit Obama, tweeting afterwards that he couldn’t wait to get his clock back and show it to the president.
But the White House hinted on Monday that it was unlikely that Obama would personally visit with boy or look at his clock. “I don’t believe that the president will have the opportunity to meet with meet one-on-one with Ahmed Mohamed,” Press Secretary Josh Earnest told reporters.
In an interview with reporters this morning, Mohamed admitted that he didn’t bring his clock to Washington D.C. “because he’s been too busy traveling to pick it up from home,” according to the Dallas Morning News.
During his visit, he also attended a Council on American-Islamic Relations gala while he was in Washington D.C., according to the same report, and visited the National Institute of Standards and Technology.
Since obtaining his new found celebrity, the 14-year-old boy has been traveling the world visiting major tech groups and world leaders.
Just recently he posed for a photo with Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir, a known dictator accused of waging genocide in Darfur.
During his globetrotting, he also had the chance to visit Mecca with his family, as part of a Saudi government sponsored pilgrimage.
He also made an appearance on the Dr. Oz’s science fair and spent time with Google co-founder Sergey Brin at the Google Science Fair.