Thursday, 18 April, 2019

Saudi king orders government reshuffle after Khashoggi fallout

Saudi'Not In Crisis Amid Khashoggi Murder Outrage Foreign Minister Saudi King Orders Cabinet Shakeup After Khashoggi’s Killing
Leonard Rios | 28 December, 2018, 15:28

Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman appointed Ibrahim Al-Assaf as Foreign Minister and Adel Al-Jubeir as Minister of State for Foreign Affairs in a major Cabinet reshuffle on Thursday.

Al-Jubeir, the soft-spoken foreign minister since 2015, will be demoted to minister of state for foreign affairs.

Al-Assaf then joined the Council of Ministers and became minister of state until 1996, when he was appointed finance minister.

The order also calls for Prince Abdullah bin Bandar bin Abdulaziz to replace Prince Miteb bin Abdullah as chief of the National Guard, and named General Kalid bin Qirar Al Harbi as general security chief.

Badr Bin Sultan has been appointed Deputy Emir of Makkah and Eman Al-Mutairi as assistant minister of commerce.

Bin Salman has been widely associated with the October 2 killing of dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi after entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul.

Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz on Thursday carried out a limited cabinet reshuffle, according to the Saudi Press Agency.

Ibrahim al Assaf, 69, one of the...

Saudi Arabia and its 33-year-old crown prince have been under heavy global scrutiny since a team of Saudi agents killed and dismembered the Saudi dissident Jamal Khashoggi inside the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul in October.

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"Because the Saudi consul general in Istanbul was very much involved in the killing of Khashoggi and that would fall under al-Jubeir".

Assaf was released within weeks of his detention at Riyadh's Ritz-Carlton hotel previous year after being cleared of wrongdoing and without making any payment to the state, as many others held in the crackdown had to do.

King Salman also ordered the creation of a Saudi Space Agency, chaired by his 62-year-old son Prince Sultan bin Salman, who heads the Saudi tourism agency and flew aboard the US Space Shuttle Discovery in the 1980s as the first Arab in space.

Turki al-Shabana, an executive at broadcaster Rotana, was appointed minister of information.

Saudi Arabia denies the crown prince knew of the plot.

Khashoggi was an outspoken critic of the ruling House of Saud.

After the reshuffle, Prince Mohammed is set to maintain his political and security posts, including that of defense minster.

Turki al-Sheikh, head of Saudi Arabia's sports committee and a close adviser to Crown Prince Mohammed, was replaced and named as new chief of the Entertainment Commission.

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