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  • According to one Saudi official, Kushner gave “advice about how to weather the storm, urging him to resolve his conflicts around the region and avoid further embarrassments.

    According to one Saudi official, Kushner gave “advice about how to weather the storm, urging him to resolve his conflicts around the region and avoid further embarrassments." | Photo: Reuters

Published 10 December 2018
Opinion

Jared Kushner advised MBS on how to deal with scandal after murdering Jamal Khashoggi, a dissident Saudi journalist. 

Jared Kushner, the son-in-law of the United States President Donald Trump, has been in contact with Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman (MBS) throughout the scandal after the murder of Jamal Khashoggi, according to a New York Times report published Saturday.

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Despite restrictions put in place by a new chief of staff, both Kushner and MBS continued informal private chats. This continued even after Oct. 2 when the murder of journalist Khashoggi in Saudi consulate in Turkey resulted in piling scandal against MBS.

The U.S. intelligence concluded that MBS ordered the killing of Khashoggi. When many of Western countries and allies of Saudi Arabia started criticizing the kingdom and reviewing their relationship with the oil-rich country, MBS found an ally in Kushner who defended him inside the White House.

According to one Saudi official, Kushner gave “advice about how to weather the storm, urging him to resolve his conflicts around the region and avoid further embarrassments.”

Since the death of Khashoggi, White House officials have publicly recognized only one conversation between the crown prince and Kushner i.e. an Oct 10 call joined by national security advisor John R. Bolton.

But the NY Times report revealed in details the depth of their conversations which started even before Trump was elected president and MBS named crown prince.

According to the article, a group of Saudi delegation tried to butter Kushner with the issue of Palestine and Kushner fell for their presentation as he had no idea about the Middle East and its history or politics.

Kushner argued in favor of MBS and asked the president to stand with him as MBS is essential to U.S. administration’s broader strategy for the Middle East.

However, the Saudi king who is still the official head resisted Kushner’s plans for the region.

“The Palestinian issue will remain our primary issue,” the king declared in a speech last month, going against the plans of Kushner and MBS, adding, “until the Palestinian people receive all of their legal rights.”

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