Intelligence official says Khashoggi report 'obviously' will challenge Saudi relationship

Intelligence official says Khashoggi report 'obviously' will challenge Saudi relationship
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Director of National Intelligence Avril HainesAvril HainesOvernight Defense: Biden makes his Afghanistan decision Intel assessment warns of increasing threats from China, Russia Hillicon Valley: Intel heads to resume threats hearing scrapped under Trump | New small business coalition to urge action on antitrust policy | Amazon backs corporate tax hike to pay for infrastructure MORE says the U.S. intelligence report implicating Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince in the death of columnist Jamal Khashoggi will “obviously” challenge the U.S. relationship with Saudi Arabia.

The Office of the Director of National Intelligence released a declassified report Friday finding Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the nation's de-facto leader, approved an operation "to capture or kill” Khashoggi in 2018.

Speaking in an interview on NPR’s “All Things Considered,” Haines conceded that the report could negatively impact President BidenJoe BidenIRS to roll out payments for ,000 child tax credit in July Capitol Police told not to use most aggressive tactics in riot response, report finds Biden to accompany first lady to appointment for 'common medical procedure' MORE’s goals to “recalibrate” the U.S.’s relationship with Saudi Arabia.


“I mean, obviously, it's going to be challenging. And, you know, it's among a number of things that are challenging that the president is managing right now,” Haines told NPR. “But I am hopeful and it certainly I know the president's view to keep the channels of communication open and to try to work through these issues.”

“I am sure it is not going to make things easier. But I think it's also fair to say that it is not unexpected,” she added when asked how the release of the report would impact her relationship with Saudi intel officials. “I hope we are able to continue to do work where it makes sense for us to do work and to continue to communicate as we have."

In addition to the report, Secretary of State Antony BlinkenAntony BlinkenLawmakers want Biden to pressure Saudi Arabia to end Yemen blockade Biden sparks bipartisan backlash on Afghanistan withdrawal  Kerry to visit China ahead of White House climate summit MORE announced visa restrictions against 76 Saudi individuals believed to be engaged in threatening dissidents overseas.

The Treasury Department also sanctioned Ahmad Hassan Mohammed al Asiri, former Deputy of the General Intelligence Presidency, and Saudi Arabia’s Rapid Intervention Force over their roles in the killing.

Khashoggi was killed by a Saudi hit squad in October 2018 while at the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul to obtain documents for a marriage license. Turkish authorities have claimed he was strangled once he entered the consulate and was dismembered.