The United Arab Emirates warned Friday that the growing controversy over the disappearance of journalist Jamal Khashoggi should not be exploited to "destabilize" Saudi Arabia.
The UAE state minister for foreign affairs, Anwar Gargash, tweeted that Abu Dhabi was "firmly" opposed to "politicization (of the case) and efforts to destabilize Saudi Arabia," its close ally.
Pro-government Turkish media have repeatedly claimed that Khashoggi, a Saudi dissident and U.S. resident who wrote for the Washington Post, was tortured and decapitated by a Saudi hit squad inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, although Turkey has yet to divulge details about the investigation.
But the controversy has already put the kingdom -- for decades a key Western ally and bulwark against Iran in the Middle East -- under unprecedented pressure amid reports it is scrambling to provide an explanation to take the heat off its rulers.
It is also a major crisis for Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, a favorite of the Trump administration who has portrayed himself as a modernizing Arab reformer, but whose image and even position at home could now be gravely undermined.
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