El Salvador’s populist president got into a Twitter spat with the White House, accusing the Biden administration of trying to take over his country with communist insurgents.

President Nayib Bukele was elected in a 2019 landslide and has frequently sparred with the Biden administration on social media on a variety of topics, such as immigration and crime.


The latest run-in started on Dec. 8 when Bukele tweeted a video of Biden talking about seeking democracy in Afghanistan and said, “It is clear that the interests of the United States Government have NOTHING TO DO with democracy, in ANY COUNTRY.”

This was followed up by several tweets the next day from Brian Nichols, the assistant secretary for Western Hemisphere Affairs at the State Department.

“We condemn @nayibbukele's false accusations against @POTUS and other U.S. government officials,” he tweeted. "These unwarranted personal attacks attempt to distract the Salvadoran people from corruption in the Bukele administration and they damage El Salvador’s relationship with the U.S.”

Bukele then posted several private text messages that appeared to be from a U.S. Southern Command official, asking him to release a Salvadoran prisoner with an ankle bracelet. Bukele refused, saying that technology is not secure in his country.

“False accusations? Is it false that Jean Manes asked me to release Neto Muyshondt (captured in video giving tens of thousands of US dollars to gang members)?” Bukele tweeted.

Around the same time, the U.S. Treasury accused Bukele of bribing street gang members to stop killing each other so his crime rate would go down, according to news reports. He called this a lie on Twitter.

Then, on Dec. 12, Bukele tweeted: “US taxpayers should know that their government is using their money to fund communist movements against a democratic elected (and with a 90% approval rating) government in El Salvador. It’s not working though.”

Tensions even spilled over in person earlier in the year when Biden refused to meet Bukele, who was on an unannounced U.S. trip. The snub was reciprocated when an American official visited El Salvador.


Bukele has also taken to the airwaves to vent his frustration with America, appearing twice on Fox News. He discussed crime and said Biden’s open borders will undermine the workforce in El Salvador.