Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman threatened the US with “major economic consequences” after President Joe Biden vowed “consequences” for the Kingdom after it slashed oil production last year.
The allegation came in a report from the Washington Post newspaper on Thursday based on classified documents released on the videogame-centric Discord messaging app.
Bin Salman made the threat as the Biden administration sought to lower energy prices in a bid to tamp down on rampant inflation that continues to be a thorn in the side of Biden. In essence, the crown prince warned that any consequences would be met with a fundamental overhaul of the US-Saudi bilateral relationship, the Post reported.
The document obtained by the Post says bin Salman said “he will not deal with the U.S. administration anymore,” and vowed “major economic consequences for Washington.”
Biden did not ultimately impose any penalties on Riyadh for its decision to dramatically curtail oil output, and Saudi Arabia has subsequently gone on to further slash production in an effort to drive prices higher.
It is unclear if the threat ever made its way directly to US officials, or was picked up as part of intelligence collection efforts. But the White House told the newspaper that “we are not aware of such threats by Saudi Arabia.”
“In general, such documents often represent only one snapshot of a moment in time and cannot possibly offer the full picture,” a National Security Council spokesperson said.
“The United States continues to collaborate with Saudi Arabia, an important partner in the region, to advance our mutual interests and a common vision for a more secure, stable, and prosperous region, interconnected with the world,” they added.