Saudi Prince told aide he would use 'a bullet' on Khashoggi: NYT | WeForNews | Latest News, Blogs Saudi Prince told aide he would use ‘a bullet’ on Khashoggi: NYT – WeForNews | Latest News, Blogs
Connect with us

World

Saudi Prince told aide he would use ‘a bullet’ on Khashoggi: NYT

Published

on

journalist Jamal Khashoggi

New York, Feb 8: Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman told a top aide in 2017 that he would use “a bullet” on Jamal Khashoggi, a journalist who was murdered last October, if the latter did not return to the Kingdom and end his criticism of the Saudi government, a New York Times report said.

The conversation, intercepted by American intelligence agencies, is the most detailed evidence to date that the Crown Prince considered killing Khashoggi, a columnist for The Washington post, long before a team of Saudi operatives murdered him inside the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul on October 2, 2018, and dismembered his body using a bone saw, the report said on Thursday.

According to informed officials, the conversation that took place between Prince Mohammed and the aide, Turki Aldakhil in September 2017, has been transcribed and analysed as part of an effort by intelligence agencies to find proof of who was responsible for Khashoggi’s death.

The National Security Agency (NSA) and other American intelligence agencies are now sifting through years of the Crown Prince’s voice and text communications that the NSA routinely intercepted and stored, The New York Times quoted the officials as saying.

Also in September 2017, Khashoggi began writing opinion columns for The Washington Post, and top Saudi officials discussed ways to lure him back to the country, the officials said.

In the conversation, Prince Mohammed said that if Khashoggi could not be enticed back to Saudi Arabia, then he should be returned by force.

If neither of those methods worked, the Crown Prince said, then he would go after the slain journalist “with a bullet”.

At the time of the conversation, Prince Mohammed was in the midst of consolidating power in the Kingdom, The New York Times said.

Just months earlier, his father, King Salman, elevated him to second in line to the throne.

Later that year, Prince Mohammed ordered hundreds of influential businessmen and Saudi royals, some who had been considered contenders to the throne, locked up at the Ritz Carlton hotel in Riyadh, the Saudi capital, where they were interrogated.

Days before the conversation with Aldakhil, according to the informed officials, Prince Mohammed complained to another aide, Saud al-Qahtani, that Khashoggi had grown too influential.

The Crown Prince Mohammed said that Khashoggi’s articles and Twitter posts were tarnishing the his image as a forward-thinking reformer.

Responding to the report, Aldakhil said on Thursday night: “These allegations are categorically false. They appear to be a continuation of various efforts by different parties to connect His Royal Highness Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to this horrific crime. These efforts will prove futile.”

A Saudi official also issued a statement saying: “We again deny any involvement on the part of the Crown Prince in the heinous murder of Jamal Khashoggi.”

Meanwhile, UN rapporteur Agnes Callamard presented preliminary findings on Thursday saying that Khashoggi’s murder was the consequence of a plan hatched by officials of the Kingdom.

“Evidence collected during my mission to Turkey shows prime facie case that Khashoggi was the victim of a brutal and premeditated killing, planned and perpetrated by officials of the State of Saudi Arabia,” Callamard said.

Callamard, who travelled to Turkey with a team that included a serious-crime investigator and a forensics expert, said she found that Saudi Arabia was hindering and undermining Turkish authorities’ efforts to elucidate the circumstances of the journalist’s death.

She said her team will continue their investigation in the upcoming weeks and she urged anyone with any information about the assassination to come forward.

The team’s final report will be presented in June to the UN Human Rights Council.

IANS

World

”Trump wanted to sell Puerto Rico following Hurricane Maria”

Hurricane Maria struck Puerto Rico in September 2017 and caused an estimated 2,982 fatalities and US $90 billion in damage, according to official data.

Published

on

By

Trump Sell Puerto Rico

Washington, July 13 : US President Donald Trump considered selling Puerto Rico in the aftermath of the destructive Hurricane Maria in 2017, former acting Homeland Security Secretary Elaine Duke has told the New York Times.

In an interview with the newspaper on Friday, Duke said that “the president”s initial ideas were more of as a businessman”, Xinhua news agency reported.

“Can we outsource the electricity? Can we sell the island? You know, or divest of that asset?” Trump reportedly said, according to the New York Times interview.

Nonetheless, the idea of selling the US territory was never seriously considered or discussed after it was raised, Duke said.

Hurricane Maria struck Puerto Rico in September 2017 and caused an estimated 2,982 fatalities and US $90 billion in damage, according to official data.

Trump has criticized Puerto Rican officials for their management of the relief fund that his administration provided for the island”s recovery. In November 2018, White House officials told Congress that Trump didn”t want any additional relief funding to the island.

Continue Reading

Lifestyle

Pope ”pained” by Hagia Sophia mosque decision

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said the first Muslim prayers would be held in Hagia Sophia on July 24.

Published

on

By

Hagia Sophia Mosque

Vatican City, July 13 : Pope Francis has said he”s “pained” by Turkey”s decision to convert Istanbul’s Hagia Sophia back into a mosque.

Speaking at a service in the Vatican, the Roman Catholic leader added that his “thoughts go to Istanbul”, the BBC reported.

Hagia Sophia was built as a Christian cathedral nearly 1,500 years ago and turned into a mosque after the Ottoman conquest of 1453.

The Unesco World Heritage Site became a museum in 1934 under Turkish Republic founding father Ataturk.

But earlier this week a Turkish court annulled the site”s museum status, saying its use as anything other than a mosque was “not possible legally”.

Pope Francis confined himself to a few words on the issue: “My thoughts go to Istanbul. I think of Santa Sophia and I am very pained.”

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said the first Muslim prayers would be held in Hagia Sophia on July 24.

Shortly after the announcement, the first call to prayer was recited at the site and broadcast on all of Turkey”s main news channels. Hagia Sophia”s social media channels have also been taken down.

Islamists in Turkey have long called for it to become a mosque again but secular opposition members opposed the move.

Defending the decision, President Erdogan stressed that the country had exercised its sovereign right, and he added that the building would remain open to all Muslims, non-Muslims and foreign visitors.

The Pope is one of several religious and political leaders worldwide who have criticised the move.

The World Council of Churches has called on President Erdogan to reverse the decision. The Church in Russia, home to the world”s largest Orthodox Christian community, immediately expressed regret that the Turkish court had not taken its concerns into account when ruling on Hagia Sophia.

It has also drawn condemnation from Greece, and Unesco said its World Heritage Committee would now review the monument”s status.

One of Turkey”s most famous authors, Orhan Pamuk, told the BBC that the decision would take away the “pride” some Turks had in being a secular Muslim nation.

“There are millions of secular Turks like me who are crying against this but their voices are not heard,” said Pamuk.

Continue Reading

Disaster

Iran’s Khamenei says all must help fight ‘tragic’ virus resurgence

Published

on

Ali Khamenei

Everyone must help fight the “tragic” resurgence of the novel coronavirus outbreak, Iran’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei says.

Speaking in a video conference to parliamentarians, Khamenei stated that Iran’s “enemies” fail to achieve their “anti-Iran goals” despite strong pressure on Tehran.

Earlier, Khamenei criticized the US for using “knee on neck” policies on the whole world and also accused the US of creating COVID-19.

Continue Reading
Advertisement

Most Popular