Seeking backers for new fund, Jared Kushner turns to Middle East

That spring, a few months later, Mr. Kushner managed to convince his stepfather to make his first international trip to a summit in Riyadh, the Saudi capital, where the president was pictured participating in a dance. traditional sword. Around the same time, Mr. Kushner personally helped negotiate a 10-year deal for Saudi Arabia to buy more than $ 110 billion in U.S. weapons. Prince Mohammed was named crown prince in June.

Mr Kushner and Prince Mohammed communicated regularly and informally via text message, and they addressed each other by first name. After Khashoggi’s murder, Mr. Kushner defended Prince Mohammed in the White House, despite intelligence reports showing his involvement in the journalist’s execution plan.

In a move widely interpreted as an attempt to protect the prince, Mr. Trump kept those reports closed throughout his tenure. They were unsealed this year by President Biden, who called Saudi Arabia a “pariah” and took a much colder approach to the kingdom than his predecessor.

While in the White House, Mr. Kushner devoted much of his energy to trying to enlist the Arab states in a large market to provide economic benefits to the Palestinians in return for Palestinian concessions to Israel. While this attempt was no more successful than previous efforts for peace in the Middle East, his talks with the Emiratis and a few neighbors ultimately resulted in Abraham’s more limited accords on normalizing relations with Israel.

Mr. Kushner has kept a low profile since leaving the White House. With his wife, Ivanka Trump, and their children, he moved to Miami, beyond the media glamor of New York and Washington. He has established Affinity there in recent months.

He told his associates that he had no desire to return to politics. Seeking to build on the covenants he helped negotiate in government, Kushner launched the Abrahamic Peace Accord Institute, a nonprofit group that will seek to expand trade ties. between Israel and its Arab neighbors.

Mr Kushner is also hoping his new company, Affinity, will find cross-border investment opportunities in the Middle East, the person with knowledge of the company’s plans said. A key area of ​​interest, the person said, is forging an investment relationship between Israel and Saudi Arabia.

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