Tags: Middle East | jhamal khashoggi | saudi arabia | murder | ambassador | consulate

NBC: Saudi Amb. Tried to Persuade Khashoggi to Return to Kingdom

saudi ambassador to us prince khalid bin salman bin abdulaziz greets president donald trump
President Donald Trump greets the Saudi Arabia Ambassador to the U.S. Prince Khalid bin Salman bin Abdulaziz during an Iftar dinner in the State Dining Room at the White House in June. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

By    |   Monday, 22 October 2018 07:05 PM

The Saudi ambassador to the United States in early 2018 or 2017 had an impromptu sit-down with Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi in an attempt to persuade him to return to Saudi Arabia, NBC News reports.

Prince Khalid bin Salman bin Abdul-Aziz, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman's brother, offered Khashoggi a job and told him all would be forgiven. Khashoggi was an outspoken critic of Mohammed's, and often wrote critically of the Saudi government in the Post. He lived in Washington, D.C., in self-imposed exile and was a U.S. resident, but was murdered in early October when he stopped into the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, Turkey to pick up wedding papers.

Saudi Arabia said Khashoggi left the consulate alive, but recanted and last Friday admitted he died in the compound when a discussion with officials turned into a brawl. Turkish officials for weeks have maintained Khashoggi's murder was planned, and the Saudi Arabian government is covering it up.

Khalid following the disappearance told Washington contacts Khashoggi "has many friends in the Kingdom, including myself," adding the pair had "maintained regular contact when he was in Washington."

"Jamal is a Saudi citizen whose safety and security is a top priority for the Kingdom, just as is the case with any other citizen," Khalid wrote Oct. 8. "We will not spare any effort to locate him."

Khalid's attempt was one of many by the Saudi government to lure Khashoggi back to Saudi Arabia, but the journalist refused because he feared he would be imprisoned or worse.

"He said: 'Are you kidding? I don't trust them one bit," Khaled Saffuri, an Arab American political activist, told the Post two weeks ago while recounting a conversation he had with Khashoggi in May after Khashoggi had received a call from Saud al-Qahtani, an adviser to the royal court.

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According to the Saudi ambassador to the United States, Prince Khalid bin Salman bin Abdul-Aziz, he attempted to talk Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi into returning to the kingdom in early 2018 or 2017, NBC News reports.
jhamal khashoggi, saudi arabia, murder, ambassador, consulate
Monday, 22 October 2018 07:05 PM
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