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Trump calls MBS 'friend,' is silent on Khashoggi

Video Credit: Reuters Studio
Published on June 29, 2019 - Duration: 02:30s

Trump calls MBS 'friend,' is silent on Khashoggi

President Donald Trump says he appreciated Saudi Arabia's purchase of U.S. military equipment, calling Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman a "friend of mine" who had worked to open up the country with economic and social reforms. Rough cut (no reporter narration).

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Trump calls MBS 'friend,' is silent on Khashoggi

Trump's plan to boost defense sales to the kingdom has hit obstacles in Congress, where Democrats and some fellow Republicans are not happy about human rights abuses, including the murder last year of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

"It's an honour to be with the crown prince of Saudi Arabia, a friend of mine - a man who has really done things in the last five years in terms of opening up Saudi Arabia," Trump said on Saturday (June 29) ahead of a bilateral meeting with the crown prince.

"I think especially what you've done for women and seeing what's happening - it's like a revolution in a very positive way," he added, speaking on the sidelines of a Group of 20 (G20) summit.

"We're trying to do our best for our country, Saudi Arabia, and it's a long journey," the crown prince said.

Trump declined to say whether he would address the death of Khashoggi, who was a critic of the crown prince Mohammed bin Salman, in his meeting.

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