Kushner and Saudi Crown Prince Communicated Via Encrypted Messaging

Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead/Public Domain

Jared Kushner reportedly used the encrypted messaging service Whatsapp to communicate with the Saudi crown prince.

As U.S. officials continue monitoring the investigation into journalist Jamal Khashoggi’s disappearance, White House senior adviser Jared Kushner’s relationship with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has come under increased scrutiny, with CNN reporting that the president’s son-in-law raised concerns among officials by communicating with the crown prince using the encrypted messaging service Whatsapp.

From The Hill:

> Once concerns were raised about Kushner's close ties to the crown prince, Kushner reportedly told others within Trump's team about his conversations with the crown prince, according to CNN.


> CNN reported that Kushner, who is also President Trump's son-in-law, has worked "behind the scenes" to stay out of the spotlight and help handle the diplomatic fallout in the wake of Khashoggi's disappearance.


> A White House spokesperson told The Hill in a statement that Kushner "has always meticulously followed protocols and collaborated with colleagues regarding the relationship with [Crown Prince Mohammed] and all of the other foreign officials with whom he interacts.”

Kushner reportedly spoke with Crown Prince Mohammed on the phone last week regarding Khashoggi’s disappearance, with National Security Adviser John Bolton also on the call.

Both the crown prince and King Salman have denied any knowledge of the journalist’s whereabouts and agreed to a joint investigation with Turkish authorities.

> The crown prince's image as a reformer has come under fresh scrutiny following Khashoggi's disappearance. Turkish officials have said they believe Khashoggi was killed in the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul on orders from Saudi leadership. Khashoggi has been missing since Oct. 2 when he entered the consulate in Turkey.

More here.