Saudi Arabia’s crown prince, Mohammed bin Salman, directed the operation that ended with the grisly murder of U.S.-based journalist Jamal Khashoggi, Los Angeles Times reported citing an unclassified U.S. intelligence report.
The four-page report cited by the paper said the goal of the mission in 2018, which included seven members of the crown prince’s “elite personal protective detail,” was to capture or kill Khashoggi, a Saudi journalist and prominent critic of the kingdom’s rulers.
“We base this assessment on the Crown Prince’s control of decision-making in the Kingdom, the direct involvement of a key adviser and members of Muhammad bin Salman’s protective detail in the operation, and the Crown Prince’s support for using violent measures to silence dissidents abroad, including Khashoggi,” said the four-page report, according to the newspaper.
The news report said a classified version of the report was completed shortly after Khashoggi was lured into a Saudi consulate in Turkey and killed by a team of assassins on Oct. 2, 2018. But the Trump administration withheld the findings, reflecting the former president’s embrace of the up-and-coming crown prince as the presumptive heir to the kingdom’s throne even after Khashoggi’s brutal slaying, LA Times added.