Kushner Backs CIA Finding of Saudi Blame for Khashoggi Death

Emma Kinery and Justin Sink
Kushner Backs CIA Finding of Saudi Blame for Khashoggi Death

(Bloomberg) -- Jared Kushner, President Donald Trump’s senior adviser and son-in-law, said he doesn’t dispute the CIA’s conclusion that Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman of Saudi Arabia was behind the death of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi.

“Look, I’m not going to dispute American intelligence services’ recommendations. I’m also not going to talk about anything intelligence-related,” Kushner said at a TIME Magazine 100 forum.

Trump has played down the role of the crown prince in Khashoggi’s murder at the kingdom’s consulate in Istanbul last year. His administration has been criticized for refusing to limit ties to Saudi Arabia or to overtly condemn Prince Mohammed.

Kushner has a close relationship with the crown prince. In December, House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Elijah Cummings said Kushner’s lawyer, Abbe Lowell, said his client used non-secure WhatsApp to message Prince Mohammad and other foreign leaders.

Kushner said Tuesday that Khashoggi’s death was a “terrible thing” but said his job was to advance American foreign policy interests. Kushner said he told the crown prince to “be as transparent as possible and that obviously we have to make sure there’s accountability for what happened.”

Asked if Prince Mohammed had heeded that advice, Kushner said, “Well, we’ll find out.”

To contact the reporters on this story: Emma Kinery in Washington at ekinery@bloomberg.net;Justin Sink in Washington at jsink1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Kasia Klimasinska at kklimasinska@bloomberg.net, Alex Wayne, Justin Blum

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