Biden has not declassified Khashoggi report, despite panel recommendation

Biden campaigned on taking a firmer stance against the Middle Eastern monarchy, but has since drawn bipartisan criticism for his dealings with the kingdom.

Updated: September 29, 2022 - 9:20pm

The Facts Inside Our Reporter’s Notebook

President Joe Biden has yet to declassify an intelligence report on the murder of Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi despite a government panel reportedly recommending he do so months ago.

The Public Interest Declassification Board, a bipartisan panel, recommended in June that Biden release an assessment on the journalist's 2018 murder, according to the Wall Street Journal.

In 2021, Biden's administration published an intelligence report fingering Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman as the architect of the assassination, according to the Washington Examiner. It further recommended sanctions on Saudi officials, notably excluding the crown prince, but the Office of the Director of National Intelligence retracted the report and removed three individuals from it.

Biden campaigned on taking a firmer stance against the Middle Eastern monarchy, but has since drawn bipartisan criticism for his dealings with the kingdom. The president attempted to negotiate an oil production deal with Riyadh in July of this year amid the ongoing energy crisis, but left the country having made no headway.

While there, the president was filmed performing a "fist bump" with the crown prince, a traditionally familiar gesture between acquaintances. The exchange prompted conservatives and liberals alike to chastise Biden. Washington Post reporter Ashely Parker said "Biden still fist-bumped the man who ordered the murder... of a U.S. journalist."

In August, the State Department cleared the sale of 300 ballistic missiles and equipment to the Saudis.

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