Saudi Arabia’s crown prince recommended using a “poison ring” to eliminate the late King Abdullah, a former top Saudi intelligence official has claimed.
In a discussion with CBS, Saad al-Jabri stated that Mohammed bin Salman told his cousin in 2014 that he intended to do so to clean the throne for his father.
There were anxieties within the ruling family at the time over the accession.
The Saudi authority has called Mr Jabri a dis-reputed former official with a long history of falsification.
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In his discussion with CBS’s 60 Minutes programm Mr Jabri cautioned that Crown Prince Mohammed – Saudi Arabia’s de facto ruler and the son of King Salman – was a
“psychopath, killer, in the Middle East with infinite resources, who poses threat to his people, to the Americans and to the planet”.
He claimed that at a 2014 assembly the prince recommended to his cousin Prince Mohammed bin Nayef, the then interior minister, that he could plan the elimination of King Abdullah.
“He told him: ‘I want to assassinate King Abdullah. I get a poison ring from Russia. It’s enough for me just to shake hand with him and he will be done,'” Mr Jabri said.
“Whether he’s just bragging… he said that and we took it seriously.”
He declared that the matter was resolved behind closed doors within the royal court. Still he added that the meeting was covertly recorded and that he knew where two copies of the video recording were.
Abdullah pass on at the age of 90 in 2015 and was replaced by his half-brother Salman, Mohammed bin Salman’s father, who named Mohammed bin Nayef as crown prince.
In 2017, Mohammed bin Nayef was succeeded as heir to the throne by Mohammed bin Salman. He also lost his role as interior minister and was believed to have been placed under house arrest before being placed in custody last year on indefinite indictment.
Mr Jabri flee to Canada after Mohammed bin Nayef was toppled.
He said in the discussion that he was informed by a friend in a Middle Eastern intelligence service that Mohammed bin Salman was sending a strike team to assassinate him in October 2018, just days after Saudi agents killed the opposing Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi in Turkey.
He claimed that a six-person team arrived at an airport in Ottawa but were repatriated after customs found they were carrying
“suspicious equipment for DNA analysis”.
Last year, Mr Jabri accused the crown prince of attempted homicide in a civil suit submitted in a US federal court.
The prince dismissed the claims. He has also renounced participating in the murder of Jamal Khashoggi, despite the fact that US intelligence agencies evaluated that he consented to the operation.
The BBC has communicated with the Saudi authorities for statement on the claims.
In a declaration sent to CBS, the Saudi embassy in Washington described Mr Jabri as
“a discredited former government official with a long record of falsifying and creating diversions to conceal the financial offence he committed, which amount to billions of dollars, to furnish a lavish life-style for himself and his family”.
Mr Jabri is being prosecuted for fraudulent conduct by various Saudi institutions and a Canadian judge has frozen his properties saying there is
“overwhelming evidence of fraud”.
He contradicts stealing any government money, saying his former employers recompensed him plentifully.
In March 2020, Saudi authorities detained Mr Jabri’s son Omar and daughter Sarah in what human rights groups stated was a clear effort to pressurize him to return to Saudi Arabia.
Last November, two months after their father sued the crown prince, the siblings were sentenced to nine and six-and-a-half years in prison individually by a Saudi court after being declared guilty of money laundering and “attempting to escape” the country. They declared the charges untrue.
An appeals court endorsed their judgement in a secret hearing at which they were absent.