LOOK: Obama Goes to Cuban Baseball Game, Does the Wave with Castro
Update: The president explained his decision in an interview at the ballgame.
Obama spoke briefly about the attacks - which killed at least 30 people at an airport and metro station - during a broader address about the new U.S.-Cuba relationship.
At least nine Americans, including a U.S. service member and his family members, were injured in the blasts.
“We will do whatever is necessary to support our friend and ally Belgium in bringing to justice those who are responsible," Obama said in his remarks.
The president's critics have seized on his lack of response, with Ted Cruz and John Kasich saying that he should head home or to Brussels immediately.
President Obama looks and sounds so ridiculous making his speech in Cuba, especially in the shadows of Brussels. He is being treated badly!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 22, 2016
Obama later moved on to an exhibition game between the Tampa Bay Rays and the Cuban National Team at Estadio Latinoamericano in Havana.
A moment of silence for the victims was observed before the game, but critics quickly slammed the president for doing the wave alongside President Raul Castro, a moment captured by ESPN's cameras.
and here it is: Obama doing the wave pic.twitter.com/1erVpjEVYN
— Colin Campbell (@BKcolin) March 22, 2016
As Brussels is on lockdown, Obama is doing the wave in Havana.
— John Podhoretz (@jpodhoretz) March 22, 2016
— Dana (@DanaTheBlaze) March 22, 2016
Brussels under attack, ISIS marching & Obama is doing the wave at a baseball game with a human rights abusing commi https://t.co/vjoI4yKEy4
— Katie Pavlich (@KatiePavlich) March 22, 2016
it's cool tho because obama just did the wave in cuba https://t.co/yCv00oz2n0
— Kate Bennett (@KateBennett_DC) March 22, 2016
Does 'the wave' with Castro... https://t.co/IzIdzLkXn2
— DRUDGE REPORT (@DRUDGE_REPORT) March 22, 2016
— Jeanine Pirro (@JudgeJeanine) March 22, 2016
UPDATE 5:50 p.m.
The president explained his decision to go to the game this afternoon, speaking to ESPN at the stadium. He was asked if he considered not attending so he could focus on the response to the attack. He responded:
“It’s always a challenge when you have a terrorist attack anywhere in the world, particularly in this age of 24/7 news coverage. You want to be respectful and understand the gravity of the situation, but the whole premise of terrorism is to try to disrupt people’s ordinary lives.”
Watch the full comments above.