Saudi Crown Prince, Muhammad Bin Salman

Saudi crown prince heads to Turkey, first time since Khashoggi murder

NEWS DIGEST – Saudi Crown Prince, Mohammed bin Salman is expected in Turkey on Wednesday, hoping to normalise relations strained after the 2018 murder of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi in the kingdom’s Istanbul consulate.

Talks with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan come amid efforts by the oil-rich kingdom’s de facto ruler to repair his image and Erdoğan’s search for financial and diplomatic gains to help mend an ailing economy ahead of next year’s elections.

According to the Turkish presidential office, Erdoğan will receive the crown prince in an official ceremony at the presidential palace later on Wednesday, followed by a dinner in his honour.

Erdoğan travelled to Saudi Arabia in April for the first time since the brutal murder of Khashoggi in 2018.

U.S. President Joe Biden is also set to visit the Gulf kingdom next month.

The world leaders are open to re-establishing warmer ties amid rising fuel prices and tensions with Russia.

U.S. intelligence services have identified the 36-year-old crown prince as being behind the Khashoggi murder.

The Saudi royal house rejects the claim.

After initially investigating the murder and conducting a trial in absentia of 26 defendants, a Turkish court controversially ruled in April to move the trial to Saudi Arabia.

dpa/NAN

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