Former Saudi official claims damaging secrets against Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman – .

Former Saudi official claims damaging secrets against Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman – .

In this summer 2021 photo provided by CBS News, former senior Saudi security official Saad al-Jabri sits for an interview with reporter Scott Pelley in Washington during an interview for “60 Minutes.”The Associated Press

A former senior Saudi security official who has helped oversee joint US counterterrorism efforts claimed in an interview with “60 Minutes” that the kingdom’s crown prince had previously spoken of the murder of a Saudi monarch in exercise before his own father was crowned king.

Saad al-Jabri did not provide evidence on CBS News, which airs Sunday.

The former intelligence official, who resides in exile in Canada, claimed that in 2014 Prince Mohammed boasted that he could kill King Abdullah. At the time, Prince Mohammed did not hold any leadership position in government, but served as a guardian of his father’s royal court when his father was still heir to the throne. King Salman ascended to the throne in January 2015 after the death of his half-brother, King Abdullah, of declared natural causes.

Al-Jabri used the interview to warn Prince Mohammed bin Salman that he had recorded a video that reveals even more royal and some US secrets. A short, silent clip was shown to “60 Minutes” correspondent Scott Pelley. The video, al-Jabri said, could be released if he was killed.

This is the latest attempt by the former counterterrorism official to try to pressure the 36-year-old crown prince, who the al-Jabri family say has detained two of al-Jabri’s adult children. -Jabri and uses them as pawns to force their father back. to Saudi Arabia. If he returns, al-Jabri risks being mistreated, imprisoned or under house arrest like his former boss, the former interior minister, Prince Mohammed bin Nayef, who was ousted from the line of succession by the government. Prince Mohammed bin Salman in 2017.

Al-Jabri, 62, says the crown prince will not rest until he “sees me dead” because “he fears my information.” He described Prince Mohammed ben Salman as “a psychopath, a killer”.

The crown prince sparked a global outcry after it emerged that collaborators working for him killed Saudi critic Jamal Khashoggi inside the Saudi consulate in Turkey in October 2018. After recordings from inside the consulate leaked by Turkish authorities, the Saudis claimed it was an effort to force Khashoggi back to the country, and that it turned out badly. The crown prince has denied any knowledge of the operation, despite an assessment by US intelligence services to the contrary.

Al-Jabri claimed that in a meeting in 2014 with Prince Mohammed bin Nayef, who was then chief of intelligence as interior minister, the much younger Prince Mohammed bin Salman said that he could kill King Abdullah to make way for his father on the throne. .

“He said to him, ‘I want to assassinate King Abdullah. I received a poison ring from Russia. All I have to do is shake his hand and he will be done, ”Al-Jabri said, saying the Saudi intelligence services were taking the threat seriously. The issue was dealt with within the royal family, al-Jabri said.

A video recording of that meeting still exists, he said.

The Saudi government told CBS News that al-Jabri is “a discredited former public servant with a long history of fabricating and creating distractions to hide the financial crimes he has committed.” The government has issued extradition requests and Interpol notices for al-Jabri, alleging he is wanted for corruption. Al-Jabri claims that his wealth comes from the generosity of the kings he served.

Although this is not the first time that al-Jabri has tried to pressure the crown prince, it is his first recorded interview since his son Omar al-Jabri, 23, and his daughter Sarah al- Jabri, 21, was arrested in March 2020 in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. A son-in-law was reportedly abducted in a third country, forcibly returned to Saudi Arabia, tortured and detained.

Human Rights Watch says the arrest of family members is an apparent effort to force al-Jabri to return to Saudi Arabia. A Saudi court sentenced his son and daughter to nine and six and a half years in prison, respectively, for money laundering and illegal attempting to flee Saudi Arabia, according to the rights group. An appeals court reportedly upheld the prison sentence in May, without informing the family.

Al-Jabri filed a federal lawsuit in the United States against the Saudi crown prince, alleging that the royal attempted to trap and kill him in the United States and Canada.

Meanwhile, Saudi entities are suing him in the United States and Canada, claiming he stole half a billion dollars from the counterterrorism budget. A Canadian judge has frozen his assets due to evidence of fraud as the case progresses, according to the CBS News report.

This content appears as supplied to The Globe by the original wire service. It was not edited by Globe staff.


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