Jeff Bezos Speaks Out After Reports Crown Prince Hacked His Phone
Jeff Bezos has tweeted a photo commemorating slain Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi on Wednesday, in a move that marks his first public statement since reports the Saudi Crown Prince hacked his phone.
The photo shows Bezos attending a vigil in 2019 commemorating the one-year anniversary of the death of Khashoggi – a columnist for the Washington Post, a paper that Bezos owns.
Khashoggi regularly penned highly critical articles of the Saudi government and his October 2018 murder has been linked to the government, with many believing that Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman was behind it.
Bezos has kept a low profile on social media since The Guardian first broke the news on Tuesday that Crown Prince Mohammed was believed to be responsible for hacking the Amazon CEO’s phone by sending him a video files containing malware through WhatsApp in 2018.
The United Nations has now called for an ‘immediate investigation’ into Saudi Prince’s role in the hack.
The revelations this week further give credibility to claims Bezos made in early 2019 that the Saudi government had a longstanding campaign against him and the Washington Post.
The hacking occurred in May 2018, soon after Bezos and the Crown Prince exchanged numbers at a dinner party in Los Angeles.
The encrypted video file sent to Bezos’ from Crown Prince’s personal phone appeared to be ‘an Arabic language promotional film about telecommunications,’ which may have contained malware giving the Saudi Prince access to the CEO’s phone, Business Insider reports.
Additionally, just two weeks after the Khashoggi killing, a ‘massive online campaign’ against Bezos was launched against Bezos, according to the UN investigator.
But despite global scrutiny from both governments and official bodies, the Saudi government has denied any involvement in the Khashoggi killing or in the hack of Bezos’ phone.