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What is the Actual Reason for the Scandal Raised Around the Saudi Journalist Murder?

Though the circumstances of the murder of Saudi-based opposition journalist Jamal Khashkaji in the Consulate General of Saudi Arabia in Istanbul are still unknown and the investigation is underway, there is already considerable international pressure on Er-Riyadh in this regard.

In particular, the United States and Great Britain are considering the issue of imposing sanctions on Saudi Arabia, Germany and the US urge to ban Saudi Arabia military supplies, ministers of finance of several European countries and the head of the International Monetary Fund have already cancelled their participation in the Riyadh ongoing investment forum etc.

In general, such a reaction by the United States would be considered as normal, but not in Saudi Arabia case. The gross violations of human rights in this Arab kingdom are not a new one, and the international community always used to circumvent this issue.

In this context, the scandal around the disappearance of the oppositional journalist, in fact, has quite other reasons. Interestingly, the disappearance of Khashkaji became known after the dispute between Trump and Saudi Arabia Crown Prince, though the journalist had disappeared earlier. Trump said that the royal family of Saudi Arabia should pay for its security to the United States, as otherwise it would not survive for more than two weeks. In response to Trump's statement, the Crown Prince said that he was not going to pay the US and that the kingdom would survive without the United States two thousand years.

It should be noted that this is not the only disagreement between the strategic allies. Riyadh refuses to follow the US admonitions and increase oil production, which will form a profitable price for the US in the world oil market. At the same time, Washington does not like Saudi Arabia's non-constructive attitude to the Gulf Arab countries, in particular towards Qatar, the military actions of the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen, as a result of which many civilians die, lack of progress in establishing diplomatic relations with Israel and so on. Moreover, all these contradictions emerged after Prince Mohammed bin Salman took the power.

In fact, the scandal around the disappearance of Khashkaji not only causes serious blows to the external relations of the kingdom, but may also cause serious internal political problems, creating a threat to Mohammed bin Salman's rise to the throne after his father's death. In the light of Khashkaji's disappearance, Saudi Arabia's "Council of Wisdom" held closed-door consultations for several days. According to a well-informed source in Le Figaro's diplomatic circles, the issue of electing Crown Prince was discussed.

Under such circumstances, it is crucial for Mohammed bin Salman to settle contradictions with the United States. In this context, it is of particular interest that during the visit of US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to Riyadh on the disappearance of the journalist, Saudi authorities transferred $ 100 million to the United States to support American operations in the north-east of Syria. At the same time, Er-Riyadh confessed that the journalist was really killed in the consulate ''as a result of a private dispute'', rather than at request by the Crown Prince, as American media reported, citing the American intelligence evidence.

It should be noted that the restoration of relations with Saudi Arabia is also in the interests of Washington. It should not be forgotten that allies have a common enemy, Iran, and at this point the strategic alliance between the US and Saudi Arabia is extremely important.


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