Saudi Crown Prince shouted at US national security adviser: WSJ
The reports of a tumultuous meeting between MbS and a top US official demonstrates even further the faltering ties between Riyadh and Washington
By News Desk - April 20 2022

(Photo credit: TRT World)

A meeting in September 2021 between Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MbS) and US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan erupted into anger after Sullivan pressed MbS about the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, a 19 April report from the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) revealed.

The meeting began with MbS showing up in a pair of shorts at his seaside palace, as the tone of the talks were described as “relaxed.”

However, the moment Sullivan brought up the issue of Khashoggi, the mood of the meeting instantly changed, with the Saudi Crown Prince shouting at the US official, and stating he never wants to discuss the matter again.

MbS then reportedly added that the US could forget about its request to boost oil output.

At the time, the US was suffering from rising gas prices. To make matters worse, Saudi Arabia has continued to hold its line on oil production as gas prices increase even more rapidly following the litany of sanctions placed on Russia in response to its special military operation in Ukraine.

Despite pleas from the US administration for OPEC members to boost their oil output, major OPEC members like the UAE and Saudi Arabia have both snubbed Washington’s requests in order to keep ties with Moscow.

US-Saudi ties have hit their lowest point in decades, according to the WSJ.

The strained relations are due to a multitude of factors, such as the US negotiations to revive the Iran nuclear deal, lack of support for the Saudi-led aggression against Yemen, and the White House following up on the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

The energy ministers of Saudi Arabia and the UAE said on 29 March that the OPEC+ oil alliance will continue keeping politics out of its decision-making process and will instead focus on stabilizing fuel prices.

When asked whether OPEC+ has a ‘moral responsibility’ to expel Russia from the alliance, Saudi Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman said: “If we don’t [leave politics at the door] we would not have dealt with so many countries at different times. It could have been with Iraq at one point. It could have been with Iran at another point.”

On 16 March, OPEC warned the EU against blacklisting Russian energy imports, stating that such a move would cause global energy prices to skyrocket at a rate higher than is currently being experienced.

Saudi Arabia may soon consider finalizing a decision to price its oil sales to China in yuans instead of dollars, which would cause a blow to the world reserve currency status of the US dollar.

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