Riyadh (AFP) – Saudi Arabia’s crown prince is scheduled to deal with an investment forum in Riyadh Wednesday, his first public address as the murder of critic Jamal Khashoggi dropped the kingdom into catastrophe.
Organisers of this glitzy flagship Future Investment Initiative recorded Prince Mohammed bin Salman one of the”top speakers” for the next afternoon of the three-day convention, after he left a short appearance on Tuesday.
The crown prince is very likely to look on a board along with Lebanon’s prime minister-designate Saad Hariri, whose resignation in a televised speech in the Islamic capital in mysterious circumstances last year sparked rumours that he was being held against his will.
The convention, nicknamed”Davos at the desert”, was overshadowed by the outcry over the murder of Khashoggi within the kingdom’s consulate in Istanbul on October 2, using a collection of names pulling over the instance.
The reform credentials of Prince Mohammed, the king’s strong son, have been tarnished by the scandal despite repeated denials he had some participation in the killing of this Washington Post contributor.
Saudi organisers of this seminar have sought to depict it as business as usual, declaring 12″mega deals” value greater than $50 billion in oil, gas, infrastructure and other industries on the launching day of the discussion.
Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih confessed, nevertheless, that the kingdom was in tragedy after the”abhorrent” murder of Khashoggi.
Saudi Arabia originally claimed Khashoggi left openly after going to the consulate however, as international pressure mounted, the kingdom stated he died within the assignment once an argument degenerated to a fistfight. It later confessed he had actually been murdered, as Turkish officials said all together.
The shifting narrative has triggered profound scepticism abroad.
The United States said Tuesday it was revoking the visas of Saudis implicated in the murder, as President Donald Trump ridiculed the kingdom’s answer as”among the worst cover-ups” ever.
The transfer came as Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan stated in a keenly anticipated speech on Tuesday the Khashoggi’s killing within the consulate was thoroughly planned.