Over the last few months, the Saudi crown prince, Mohammed bin Salman, has met a string of world leaders, including Joe Biden, Emmanuel Macron and Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. As Middle East correspondent Martin Chulov explains, it signals a remarkable return to the global stage for the kingdom’s de-facto ruler.
Four years ago, the brutal assassination of dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi stunned the world. It also cast a long shadow over Bin Salman who the CIA later concluded had ordered the killing. In 2020, while running for president, Biden described Saudi Arabia as a “pariah”.
The war in Ukraine, however, and the rise in energy prices that has followed, have drastically changed leaders’ priorities when dealing with the oil-rich nation, and the young crown prince who leads it.
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