Saudi Arabia will retaliate “with even greater action” if the U.S. president goes through with a threat of “severe punishment” should it be proven that Saudi agents killed dissident journalist Jamal Kashoggi in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul.
The Saudi Press Agency yesterday cited an official source as saying that “The kingdom affirms its total rejection of any threats and attempts to undermine it, whether by threatening to impose economic sanctions, using political pressures, or repeating false accusations that will not undermine the Kingdom and its staunch positions and Arab, Islamic and international status, the outcome of these weak endeavors, like their predecessors, is a demise.”
The source went on to add that, as reported by the SPA, “The Kingdom also affirms that if it receives any action, it will respond with greater action, and that the Kingdom's economy has an influential and vital role in the global economy and that the Kingdom's economy is affected only by the impact of the global economy.”
President Trump last week mentioned the “severe punishment” option during an interview with “60 Minutes” and the statement apparently came in response to it. Later that same day, however, the Saudi embassy in Washington tweeted a clarification that pretty much dismissed the tone of the official source’s warning reported by the SPA. Related: Barclays: $70 More Likely Than $100
“To help clarify recently issued Saudi statement,” the tweet said, “the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia extends it appreciation to all, including the US administration, for refraining from jumping to conclusions on the ongoing investigation.”
Jamal Khashoggi has been missing since October 2, and Turkish authorities have claimed they have audio and video evidence that he was killed in the Saudi consulate, dismembered, and taken out unnoticed. The plot, fit for a gory mystery novel, led to a lot of prominent public figures distancing themselves from the Kingdom, canceling their participation in major projects and events. The latest in this string of cold shoulder was JPMorgan’s CEO’s decision to cancel his participation in an investment conference in the Kingdom. Ford’s chairman, Bill Ford, also cancelled his plans to attend the conference.
By Irina Slav for Oilprice.com
More Top Reads From Oilprice.com:
- The Oil Markets Are At A Confusing Crossroads
- Disappearance Of Saudi Journalist Could Rock Oil Markets
- Oil Prices Subdued, But For How Long?