Saudi Crown Prince holds first-ever meeting with Jewish leaders

Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman met with heads of Orthodox Union, Reform and Conservative movements.

Tzvi Lev,

Mohammed bin Salman
Mohammed bin Salman
Reuters

Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman met with a number of Jewish leaders on Wednesday in New York, Bloomberg reported.

The Saudi monarch, who is tapped to succeed his father King Salman, met with Orthodox Union Chairman Allan Fagin, along with Reform movement head Rick Jacobs and Conservative official Steven Wernick. The visit was the first time the crown prince has met with any Jewish leaders.

“The meeting emphasized the common bond among all people, particularly people of faith, which stresses the importance of tolerance, coexistence, and working together for a better future for all of humanity,” the Saudi Embassy told Bloomberg.

Mohammed Bin Salman has been in the United States for a three-week tour to meet with senior US officials, including President Trump and Jared Kushner. In an interview earlier this month with CBS, the Saudi royal vowed to build an atomic arsenal of his own should Iran get nuclear capabilities.

“Saudi Arabia does not want to acquire any nuclear bombs, but without a doubt if Iran developed a nuclear bomb, we will follow suit as soon as possible,” the Crown Prince said.

The Saudi kingdom earlier this year declared its intentions to pursue a non-military nuclear program, with plans to build 16 nuclear power plants over the next quarter century, in a bid to modernize the country’s infrastructure and reduce its own consumption of gasoline, freeing up more for export.

Since his sudden appointment as Crown Prince, Prince Mohammed has consolidated power, announcing crackdowns on both terrorism and corruption. The 32-year-old Crown Prince also portrays himself as a liberal reformer. During an international business summit in November, he announced that the ultra-conservative kingdom would adopt a moderate and open interpretation of Islam. Previously, the kingdom announced it would cancel its longstanding ban on women driving. It is believed the Crown Prince was behind this move as well.








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