Israel’s Gaza war part of bin Salman plot to distract world from Khashoggi killing
MİDDLE EAST

Israel’s Gaza war part of bin Salman plot to distract world from Khashoggi killing

The Saudi monarch tried to convince Netanyahu of going to war with Hamas in Gaza, which would help alleviate pressure mounting on the kingdom following the fallout from the Khashoggi murder

News Service Yeni Şafak

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman is said to have persuaded Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to go to war in Gaza in a bid to divert attention from the Khashoggi case.

According to a report published by the English-language Middle East Eye news website, the Saudi monarch tried to convince Netanyahu of going to war with Hamas in Gaza, which would help alleviate pressure mounting on the kingdom following the fallout from the Khashoggi murder.

Khashoggi, a frequent contributor to The Washington Post, was killed on Oct. 2 inside the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul.

After weeks of denying involvement, the kingdom admitted Khashoggi had been killed inside the consulate but claimed the Saudi royal family had no prior knowledge of any plot to murder the journalist.

So far, 18 people -- including security officers -- have been arrested in Saudi Arabia in connection with the murder.

The report, citing sources inside the Saudi kingdom, claims an escalation of the conflict in Gaza was among several scenarios proposed by an emergency task force established to counter mounting pressure on the oil-rich kingdom as more chilling details about the Khashoggi murder became known.

The task force is said to be composed of officials from the royal court, foreign and defense ministries, and the intelligence service who brief the crown prince every six hours.

The force advised bin Salman that a war in Gaza would divert U.S. President Donald Trump’s attention away from the Khashoggi killing, and would serve to remind him that the Kingdom is an asset to Washington when it comes to “bolstering Israel’s strategic interests.”

According to the MEE report penned by MEE editor David Hearst, Netanyahu was “very eager” to help bin Salman, according to anonymous Israeli sources, as Riyadh and Tel Aviv’s secret rapprochement continues after the kingdom became a key player in Trump’s “Deal of the Century” plan.

Over the course of the last three days, at least 14 Palestinians in have been martyred in Gaza -- by Israeli airstrikes and artillery -- across the blockaded Palestinian territory.

On Sunday night, an Israeli officer was killed -- and another injured -- in a botched ground operation in Gaza.

Tensions appeared to ease slightly late Tuesday after Israel and Gaza-based resistance factions agreed to an Egypt-brokered cease-fire.

+

Cookies are used limited to the purposes in th e Personal Data Protection Law No.6698 and in accordance with the legislation. For detailed information, you can review our cookie policy.