U.S. President Joe Biden said on Friday he had warned Saudi Arabia’s crown prince he would “respond” to new attacks on dissidents, referring to the “scandalous” assassination of journalist Jamal Khashoggi .
U.S. President Joe Biden speaks during a visit to Saudi Arabia on Friday, July 15, after meeting with King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MBS) correspondent Jamal Khashoggi.
The US president specifically announced that he had warned the Saudi crown prince that he would “respond” if there were new attacks against dissidents, referring to the “scandal” assassination of Saudi journalists.
“I just made it clear that if something like this happens again, they will get this answer and so on,” he told reporters in Jeddah, saying he raised the question with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.
Joe Biden also said after his meeting with the crown prince that he reiterated to him that he was responsible for the journalist’s death.
“Blood on Your Hands”
The meeting between Joe Biden and Mohammed bin Salman was the culmination of the trip to the Middle East, as Washington tries to persuade Saudi Arabia to open the floodgates on its oil production. Challenge: Lower the price of a gallon of gasoline as the U.S. midterm elections loom.
But when he was a candidate, Joe Biden had pledged to treat Saudi Arabia as a “untouchable”, not least because of the 2018 assassination of Saudi journalist and critic Jamal Khashoggi. Once elected, he had declassified a damning report on the responsibility of the prince in this murder.
Saudi authorities have consistently denied MBS was directly responsible for the murder.
On Friday, the reporter’s widow, Hatice Cengiz, posted a tweet with a screenshot of her late spouse’s account: “Is this your way of going after those responsible for my murder? »
“The blood of the next victim of MBS is on your hands,” it added, with a photo of Joe Biden’s fist “check” of the Saudi prince.
with AFP and Reuters