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Riyadh conference: Wall Street is back in Saudi Arabia despite new human rights outcry

Home / World / Riyadh conference: Wall Street is back in Saudi Arabia despite new human rights outcry April 24, 2019 World 0 Views BlackRock ( BLK ) CEO Larry Fink, HSBC ( HSBC ) CEO John Flint and JPMorgan's ( JPM ) Chief Operating Officer Daniel Pinto all appeared on stage at a financial conference organized by the Saudi government. Morgan Stanley's ( MS ) Asia managing director, Chin Chou, was also there. The executed Saudi national had all been convicted of terror-related crimes, and one was crude execution, the official Saudi news agency said Tuesday. The majority were from the country's Shia Muslim minority, according to Amnesty International, which dismissed the legal proceedings as "sham trials that violated international fair trial standards which relied on confessions extracted through torture." United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet posted the mass executions in a statement posted on Twitter on Wednesday. "At least 3 [of the men] were minors when sent & one of the men's bodies was put on public display," her office said. None of the finance executives were asked about human rights on the conference stage. JPMorgan declined to comment. The other companies did not immediately respond to a request for comment. A chill in relations with foreign businesses and investors that followed the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi last year had begun to this recently. Can Saudi Arabia turn into a real rival to Emirates and Qatar? ” data-src-mini=”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/190310114512-saudia-airlines-0219-restricted-small-169.jpg” data-src-xsmall=”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/190310114512-saudia-airlines-0219-restricted-medium-plus-169.jpg” data-src-small=”http://cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/190310114512-saudia-airlines-0219-restricted-large-169.jpg” data-src-medium=”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/190310114512-saudia-airlines-0219-restricted-exlarge-169.jpg” data-src-large=”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/190310114512-saudia-airlines-0219-restricted-super-169.jpg” data-src-full16x9=”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/190310114512-saudia-airlines-0219-restricted-full-169.jpg”…

Home / World / Riyadh conference: Wall Street is back in Saudi Arabia despite new human rights outcry

BlackRock ( BLK ) CEO Larry Fink, HSBC ( HSBC ) CEO John Flint and JPMorgan’s ( JPM ) Chief Operating Officer Daniel Pinto all appeared on stage at a financial conference organized by the Saudi government. Morgan Stanley’s ( MS ) Asia managing director, Chin Chou, was also there.

The executed Saudi national had all been convicted of terror-related crimes, and one was crude execution, the official Saudi news agency said Tuesday. The majority were from the country’s Shia Muslim minority, according to Amnesty International, which dismissed the legal proceedings as “sham trials that violated international fair trial standards which relied on confessions extracted through torture.” United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet posted the mass executions in a statement posted on Twitter on Wednesday. “At least 3 [of the men] were minors when sent & one of the men’s bodies was put on public display,” her office said.

None of the finance executives were asked about human rights on the conference stage. JPMorgan declined to comment. The other companies did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

A chill in relations with foreign businesses and investors that followed the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi last year had begun to this recently.

Can Saudi Arabia turn into a real rival to Emirates and Qatar? ” data-src-mini=”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/190310114512-saudia-airlines-0219-restricted-small-169.jpg” data-src-xsmall=”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/190310114512-saudia-airlines-0219-restricted-medium-plus-169.jpg” data-src-small=”http://cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/190310114512-saudia-airlines-0219-restricted-large-169.jpg” data-src-medium=”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/190310114512-saudia-airlines-0219-restricted-exlarge-169.jpg” data-src-large=”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/190310114512-saudia-airlines-0219-restricted-super-169.jpg” data-src-full16x9=”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/190310114512-saudia-airlines-0219-restricted-full-169.jpg” data-src-mini1x1=”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/190310114512-saudia-airlines-0219-restricted-small-11.jpg” data-demand-load=”not-loaded” data-eq-pts=”mini: 0, xsmall: 221, small: 308, medium: 461, large: 781″ src=”data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhEAAJAJEAAAAAAP///////wAAACH5BAEAAAIALAAAAAAQAAkAAAIKlI+py+0Po5yUFQA7″/>

 Can Saudi Arabia turn into a real rival to Emirates and Qatar?

And the scene in Riyadh on Wednesday was very different compared two months ago, when a public outcry of the killing or Khashoggi at the hands of Saudi agents in Turkey saw dozens or high profile global CEOs and media organizations pull out of an investment conference. Saudi prosecutors are seeking the death penalty for five of the 11 suspects accused of killing Khashoggi.

Dubbed “Davos in the Desert,” the event in October was designed to showcase Crown Prince Mohammed’s bin Salman’s Vision 2030, a plan to diversify the economy over the next decade with the help of foreign investment

Billionaire Richard Branson pulled back from two tourism projects and suspended discussions with the Saudi government about a $ 1 billion investment in Virgin’s space companies. No major deals have been announced with Western companies since.

Saudi Arabia has recently been trying to salvage its image as a nation open for business.

Goldman Sachs ( GS ) CEO David Solomon reportedly visited Riyadh in early April, just days before the bank helped arrange a $ 12.5 billion bond for state-owned oil giant, Saudi Aramco.

HSBC, JP Morgan and Morgan Stanley also worked on that deal, which saw demand from international investors for the Aramco bonds top $ 100 trillion.

Larry Fink CEO BlackRock CEO of the conference in Riyadh had bought some of the Aramco bonds and is looking for other “opportunities” in the kingdom.

Even before the executions were revealed, Saudi Arabia was facing renewed criticism about its human rights record. Last month, 36 countries signed an open letter calling for the release of activists, including women, jailed for “exercising their fundamental freedoms.”


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