Saudi Stocks Sink as Tension With U.S. Escalates Over Khashoggi

15 October, 2018, 09:58 | Author: Brooke Harris
  • Members of Human Rights Association hold portraits of missing Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi during a demonstration in front of the Saudi consulate in Istanbul

In a joint statement on Sunday, France, Germany, and the United Kingdom said that "light must be shed" on the disappearance of the US-based journalist Jamal Khashoggi, who had not been seen since entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul earlier this month.

The drop in the Tadawul exchange in Riyadh happened Sunday, the first day of trading.

"If U.S. sanctions are imposed on Saudi Arabia, we will be facing an economic disaster that would rock the entire world", Turki Aldakhil wrote.

While the Saudi statement didn't make an explicit reference to oil, analysts and traders said it could be read as a veiled threat to use its energy riches as a political tool.

Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn., who as chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee has reviewed the USA intelligence into what happened to Khashoggi, has said, "The likelihood is he was killed on the day he walked into the consulate".

Prince Mohammed, King Salman's son, has aggressively pitched the kingdom as a destination for foreign investment.

Pressure has mounted on the WWE to cancel the event, or change the location of it, following the drama that now surrounds the country of Saudi Arabia.

Saudi Arabia's shares plunged as much as 7 percent on Sunday as investors anxious about deteriorating relations with the global community after the disappearance of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Writer Jamal Khashoggi, vanished after he walked into the consulate on October 2.

Donald Trump has said he would "punish" Saudi Arabia if it was responsible.

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A Turkish official told Reuters on Sunday that the Saudis had said they would allow the consulate to be searched, and that this would happen by the end of the weekend, though he conceded to "flexibility on this date".

Saudi Arabia said on Sunday it would retaliate to possible economic sanctions taken by other states over the case of Jamal Khashoggi, the state news agency SPA reported quoting an official source.

"The country that can help us get to the bottom of this is Saudi Arabia", he said. The U.S. provides weaponry, intelligence and logistical support for the bombing campaign.

Washington lobbying firm Harbour group which represented the Saudi government, has also terminated its $80,000 per month contract, the firm's managing director Richard Mintz said.

"The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia extends it appreciation to all, including the USA administration, for refraining from jumping to conclusions on the ongoing investigation".

The Saudi delegation, whose composition was not immediately clear, is expected to meet with Turkish officials in Ankara at the weekend, state media said on Friday.

But in response to Khashoggi's disappearance, media organisations and a growing number of executives have pulled out of a Riyadh investment conference scheduled for next week, dubbed "Davos in the Desert".

However, this incident has had immediate repercussions on how foreign investors are looking at Saudi Arabia.

The chief executive of JPMorgan Chase & Co., Jamie Dimon, had been a featured speaker at the conference in Riyadh. "Certainly our involvement in Yemen with Saudi Arabia will be effected".

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