If Iran gets nuclear bomb, Saudi Arabia will follow suit, warns crown prince

Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman being interviewed by Norah O'Donnell. (CBS NEWS)
Updated 15 March 2018
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If Iran gets nuclear bomb, Saudi Arabia will follow suit, warns crown prince

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia will develop nuclear weapons if Iran does so, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman told CBS in an interview that will air in full on “60 Minutes” on Sunday.
“Saudi Arabia does not want to acquire any nuclear bomb, but without a doubt, if Iran developed a nuclear bomb, we will follow suit as soon as possible,” the crown prince said in remarks released on Thursday.
Crown Prince Mohammed said he has referred to Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei as “the new Hitler” because “he wants to expand.”
“He wants to create his own project in the Middle East, very much like Hitler who wanted to expand at the time,” the crown prince said.
“Many countries around the world and in Europe did not realize how dangerous Hitler was until what happened, happened. I don’t want to see the same events happening in the Middle East.”
Crown Prince Mohammed, who also serves as Saudi defense minister, said last year that the Kingdom would make sure any future struggle between the two countries “is waged in Iran.” 
Riyadh has criticized the 2015 deal between world powers and Tehran under which economic sanctions on Iran were lifted in return for the Islamic Republic curbing its nuclear energy program. US sanctions will resume unless President Donald Trump issues fresh “waivers” to suspend them on May 12.
Saudi Arabia is stepping up plans to develop a civilian nuclear energy capability as part of a reform plan led by the crown prince to reduce the economy’s dependence on oil.
Saudi Energy Minister Khalid Al-Falih said in October that the nuclear program would start by building two reactors, each producing between 1.2 and 1.6 gigawatts of electricity.
The world’s top oil exporter has repeatedly said it wants nuclear technology only for peaceful uses. The US, South Korea, Russia, France and China are bidding on a multibillion-dollar tender to build the country’s first two nuclear reactors.
Riyadh also approved a national policy for its atomic energy program on Tuesday, including restricting all nuclear activities to peaceful purposes, within the limits defined by international treaties.


UAE celebrates Saudi National Day

Updated 19 min 56 sec ago
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UAE celebrates Saudi National Day

DUBAI: The celebratory mood to mark Saudi Arabia’s 88th National Day has reached as far as New York, with Nasdaq displaying images of the Kingdom’s rulers at its tower on Times Square in New York while Dubai carrier Emirates is pulling out all the stops to join in the festivities.

The Dubai airline operated a special one-off A380 service, known as EK 813 and EK 814, on Sunday to the capital city of Riyadh, touching down at King Khalid International Airport at 3:30pm. The return flight was scheduled to depart at 6:50pm.

A YouTube video from Emirates also showed crew handing out scarves embroidered with the countries’ flags, as well as white roses, to passengers while boarding the A380 aircraft.

 

Nasdaq Dubai, the UAE-based operations of the New York equities exchange, posted: “Best wishes from #NasdaqDubai to #SaudiArabia on the occasion of the 88th National day” in its Twitter account, along with photos containing images of King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed being projected on a huge electronic billboard. A separate tweet also showed an 11-second video with the merged UAE and Saudi Arabian flags fluttering on the billboard.

Burj Khalifa, the tallest building in the world, will be illuminated in the national flag of Saudi Arabia, in a display of friendship between the UAE and its Gulf neighbor.

In the UAE’s capital, the General Command of Abu Dhabi Police decorated 88 of their cars – one for every year being celebrated – with the flags of Saudi Arabia and the UAE and the words “Together Forever.”