CIA Finds Saudi Crown Prince Targeted Khashoggi

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Saudi Arabia's crown prince Mohammed bin Salman Al Saud sent at least 11 messages to his closest advisor who was charged with overseeing journalist Jamal Khashoggi's murder, in the hours leading up to the killing, the Wall Street Journal said on Saturday quoting a Central Intelligence Agency assessment.

The CIA has a "medium to high" level of confidence that Saudi Arabia's crown prince ordered the murder of the journalist Jamal Khashoggi, according to a new leak.

He had embarked on his Arab tour in later November, visiting each of the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Egypt and Tunisia.

The Algerian presidency announced the Crown Prince's official visit, saying he will head a high-ranking delegation.

He underlined that neither the Islamic world nor the worldwide community would be satisfied until the revealing of all those responsible for the killing.


It is his first trip overseas since the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, which has strained Saudi Arabia's ties with the West and battered the prince's image overseas.

US President Donald Trump, who has defended US ties with Saudi Arabia, "exchanged pleasantries" with the crown prince, the White House said.

"Our intelligence agencies continue to assess all information, but it could very well be that the Crown Prince had knowledge of this tragic event - maybe he did and maybe he didn't!"

The newspaper says bin Salman sent at least 11 messages to his closest adviser, Saud al-Qahtani.

The G20 was the first time Prince Mohammed came face-to-face with the world's most powerful leaders since the killing of Khashoggi in October.


Secretary General of the leftist Workers' Party Louisa Hanoun called Prince Mohammed's visit a "provocation". Even if United States lawmakers slap sanctions on the kingdom, the prince is likely to remain secure in his position as king-in-waiting.

The trip marked the highest-profile overseas junket for the crown prince since Khashoggi's murder.

"The political change that Mohammed bin Salman. engineered replaced the system which had literally dozens of power centers holding up the entire state", Freeman says, comparing it to a table with multiple legs.

But Secretary of State Mike Pompeo met with his Saudi counterpart in Buenos Aires, and again defended the U.S. embrace of the crown prince.

After initially denying the murder, Saudi Arabia acknowledged some liability but blamed his death on a "rogue" operation.


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