NEWS ALERT | Trump Senior Aide Kushner And Team Heading To Saudi Arabia, Qatar

White House senior advise Jared Kushner and his team are headed to Saudi Arabia and Qatar this week for talks in a region simmering with tension after the killing of an Iranian nuclear scientist.

A senior administration official said on Sunday that Kushner is to meet Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in the Saudi city of Neom, and the emir of Qatar in that country in the coming days. Kushner will be joined by Middle East envoys Avi Berkowitz and Brian Hook and Adam Boehler, chief executive of the U.S. International Development Finance Cooperation.

Kushner and his team helped negotiate normalization deals between Israel and Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Sudan since August. The official said they would like to advance more such agreement before President Donald Trump hands power to President – elect Joe Biden on Jan.20.

U.S. Official believe enticing Saudi Arabia into a deal with Israel would Prompt other Arab nations to follow suit. But the Saudis do not appear to be on the brink of reaching such a landmark deal and officials in recent weeks have been focusing on other countries, with concern about Iran’s regional influence  a uniting factor.

Kushner’s trip comes after the killing on Friday of Mohsen Fakhrizadeh in Tehran by unidentified assailants. Western and Israeli governments believe Fakhrizadeh  was the architect of secret Iranian nuclear weapons program.

Days before the killing, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu travelled to Saudi Arabia and met with bin Salman, an Israeli official said, in what was the first publicly confirmed visit by an Israeli leader. Israeli media said they were joined by U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

The historic meeting underlined how opposition  to Tehran is bringing about a strategic realignment of countries in the Middle East. Bin Salman and Netanyahu fear Biden will adopt policies on Iran similar to those adopted during Obama’s U.S. presidency which strained Washington’s ties with its traditional regional allies. Biden had said he will rejoin the international nuclear pact with Iran that Trump quit in 2018 – and work with allies to strengthen its terms – if Tehran first resumes strict compliance.

The senior administration official, speaking to Reuters on condition of anonymity, declined to give more details of Kushner’s trip for security reasons.

The official said Kushner met at the White House last week with the Kuwaiti foreign minister, Sheikh Ahmad Nasser Al – Mohammad Al – Sabah. Kuwait is seen as critical in any effort to resolve a three – year rift between Qatar and other members of the Gulf Cooperation Council.

Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates, which comprise the GCC, cut diplomatic ties with Qatar in 2017 and imposed a boycott over allegations that Qatar supported terrorism, a charge it denies.

Saudi Arabia’s King Salman, Crown Prince Donate Total of $7.9 Mln To Charity

Saudi Arabia’s King Salman bin Abdulaziz and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman have donated a total of $7.9 million (SR 30 million) to charity through the Kingdom’s Ehsan Platform, the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported on Friday. King Salman donated $5.3 million (SR20 million) for charitable and non – profitable works, while the Crown Prince contributed … More Saudi Arabia’s King Salman, Crown Prince Donate Total of $7.9 Mln To Charity

U.S. Imposes Wide Array Of Sanctions On Russia For ‘Malign’ Actions

The Unites States on Thursday imposed a boar array of sanctions on Russia to punish it for election interference, cyber – hacking, bullying Ukraine and other ‘malign’ acts. The measures blacklisted Russian companies, expelled Russian diplomats and placed limits on the Russian sovereign debt market in steps sure to anger Moscow. Among the actions, President … More U.S. Imposes Wide Array Of Sanctions On Russia For ‘Malign’ Actions

Queen Elizabeth Returns To Royal Duties Four Days After Her Husband’s Death – PM Media

Britain’s Queen Elizabeth return to royal duties on Tuesday, four days after the death of her husband, Prince Philip, in an event to mark the retirement of her household’s most senior official, PA Media reported. The queen hosted a ceremony as the Earl Peel stepped down as Lord Chamberlain, the report added. Philip, who has … More Queen Elizabeth Returns To Royal Duties Four Days After Her Husband’s Death – PM Media

Saudi Arabia’s Ithra Celebrates Ramadan With Cultural Events, Activities

Saudi Arabia’s King Abdulaziz Center for World Culture (Ithra) is celebrating the holy month of Ramadan with a wide selection of cultural events and interactive activities. Ithra is offering visitors a chance to take part in events focused on national traditions and  Saudi Arabian heritage, as well as different interactive workshops. The centre’s Ramadan program also includes a collection … More Saudi Arabia’s Ithra Celebrates Ramadan With Cultural Events, Activities

Britain’s Prince Philip Has Died

Prince Philip, the husband of Queen Elizabeth who played a leading  figure in the British royal family for almost seven decades, has died aged 99, Buckingham Palace said on Friday. The Duke of Edniburgh, as he was been y his wife’s side through her 69-year  reign, the longest in British history, during which time he … More Britain’s Prince Philip Has Died

Former Secretary Of State Pompeo To Join Fox News Media

Former U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will join Fox News Media as a contributor, the news network controlled by media baron Rupert Murdoch said on Thursday. Pompeo is the latest former Trump administration official to join the network. Other notable names include former White House secretary Kayleigh McEnany and Trump’s top economic adviser Larry … More Former Secretary Of State Pompeo To Join Fox News Media

Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Announces Opening Of Sakaka Power Plant

Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman announced the opening of the Sakaka IPP PV power plat, the Kingdom’s first renewable energy project, the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported on Thursday. The launch of the Sakaka IPP PV and the signing power purchase agreements (PPA) for seven new projects are the result of King Salman’s … More Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Announces Opening Of Sakaka Power Plant

Saudi Crown Prince Launches AlUla’s Design Vision ‘A Journey Through Time’

Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman launched the design vision for the ‘Journey Through Time’ scheme, with the aim of responsible and sustainable revitalization and rehabilitation of the main archaeological area in Saudi Arabia’s AlUla in a unique cultural and natural environment. AlUla is in the northwest of the Kingdom, where the project is … More Saudi Crown Prince Launches AlUla’s Design Vision ‘A Journey Through Time’

Former Italian PM Berlusconi In Hospital Since Tuesday – Sources

Former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi has been in has been in hospital since Tuesday afternoon for check-ups, two sources from his Forza Italy party said on Wednesday. One of the source said the 84-year-old media tycoon went to the San Raffaele  hospital in Milan for follow-up tests after contracting the new coronavirus in September … More Former Italian PM Berlusconi In Hospital Since Tuesday – Sources

Saudi Cabinet Authorizes Minister To Negotiate With Singapore On Draft Energy Memorandum

The Saudi cabinet said on Tuesday it has authorized the energy minister to negotiate with Singapore regarding a draft memorandum of understanding in the field of energy, state news agency (SPA) reported citing a cabinet statement. ‘The cabinet authorised the minister of energy – or his representative – to negotiate with the Singaporean side on … More Saudi Cabinet Authorizes Minister To Negotiate With Singapore On Draft Energy Memorandum

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