Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman approved the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi. This was stated in a report by the US intelligence services. There will be no US sanctions against Mohammed bin Salman.
Just hours after US President Joe Biden called Saudi King Salman for the first time since taking office, his administration released a CIA intelligence report on the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi. The four-page document confirms the thesis that has been circulating for a long time. Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman approved an operation in Turkey to capture or kill Khashoggi.
Khashoggi has been an advisor to the Saudi royal family for years. But in 2017 he fled to the United States. There he went to work for the Washington Post. He regularly wrote columns for the newspaper critical of the Saudi crown prince’s policy.
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman approved an operation in Turkey to capture or kill Khashoggi.
In October 2018, he went to the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul to arrange some formal procedures for his upcoming wedding. He will never leave the building. I received a Saudi assassination squad Khashoggi. Who killed him and cut his body to pieces.
At the end of 2019, a Saudi court sentenced five Saudi intelligence personnel to death for their role in the operation. But from the start, many observers suspected that Mohammed bin Salman (MBS) ordered the procedure. But the regime in Riyadh has always maintained its innocence.
Saudi Arabia rejects accountability
Saudi Arabia rejects US accusations of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. The Saudi Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced, on Friday evening, that he was not involved in any way in the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
The horrific murder was committed by a group of people who broke all the rules. The ministry added that the guilty were convicted and punished. And Jamal Khashoggi’s family welcomed this ruling as well. ”
US intelligence services argue that Mohammed bin Salman’s control of Saudi Arabia is so great that the killing would not have happened without his consent. They base their conclusions on intercepted phone calls from the crown prince in the days leading up to the killing and on phone conversations between the killing squad and a close advisor to Mohammed bin Salman. “Tell your boss that the job is done,” that would have appeared in one of those conversations.
According to US intelligence agencies, Saudi Crown Prince Khashoggi has been deemed a “threat to the kingdom.” “He supported the use of force when necessary to silence him,” the report said.
The publication of the report is evidence of a change in US policy towards the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Biden’s predecessor, Donald Trump, refused to publish the document. The fact that the new White House occupant is now switching guns from shoulder to shoulder indicates that he wants to “reset” the relationship with the traditional ally in the Middle East, especially with regard to human rights.
The main question was what were the consequences of the report for bilateral relations. Will Washington announce sanctions against prominent figures in the Saudi regime or Muhammad bin Salman himself? Or will it be harsh language?
The publication of the report is evidence of a change in US policy towards the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
An hour after the CIA report was published, the answer came. The American New York Times learned in the entourage of the US President that Biden leaves the Saudi crown prince unharmed.
After weeks of discussions, his advisers concluded that it was impossible to impose a US ban on MBS entry or prosecution without seriously harming relations with one of the main allies in the Arab world.
Shortly after the report was published, the US State Department announced that it would impose “visa restrictions” on 76 other Saudis. Washington accuses them of threatening “dissidents abroad,” specifically Khashoggi.
In turn, the US Treasury Department decided to freeze the assets in the United States of a former senior executive of the Saudi intelligence service and the Saudi Rapid Intervention Force. According to Washington, they were involved in Khashoggi’s murder.