16:25 GMT +322 September 2019
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    Barack Obama making his first public appearance after leaving office, April 2017

    Former Saudi Intelligence Head Says Caught Barack Obama ‘Lying’ to Riyadh

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    According to a former Saudi intelligence head and diplomat, former US President Barack Obama would promise things and then do “exactly the opposite.” He also said Russia and Iran were “emboldened” by Obama’s foreign policy.

    Obama lied to Saudi Arabia by setting "red lines" regarding Syria and its alleged use of chemical weapons and not enforcing them when chemical attacks did happen on Syrian soil, Prince Bandar bin Sultan said in an interview, according to The Jerusalem Post.

    Bin Sultan formerly served as head of Saudi intelligence and as Saudi ambassador to the United States.

    Speaking with Independent Arabia in an interview which has yet to be published in full, bin Sultan recalled a phone conversation with the then-US president.

    "I did not expect that [after] this long life, I would see [the day] when an American president lies to me," bin Sultan reportedly told Obama over the phone.

    During his last year in office, Obama made brash statements regarding chemical attacks in Syria, which the US repeatedly accused Damascus of orchestrating; however, when such attacks did occur, the US refrained from living up to its threats. Russia has repeatedly provided evidence that Syrian President Bashar Assad and Damascus were not behind the chemical attacks.

    According to bin Sultan, "Obama would promise something and [then] do the opposite." He recalled how Obama repeatedly blasted Iran for its nuclear power program, but ended up negotiating the so-called Iran nuclear deal — a move that, according to bin Sultan, was made "behind the back" of Saudi Arabia.

    He opined that Obama's diplomatic course has taken the Middle East "back 20 years," the Jerusalem Post reports.

    The former diplomat also said that the US' actions "emboldened" Russia and Iran to join Syria in fighting against Daesh and other terrorist groups.

    Russia and Iran are the only two participants in the Syrian conflict who received official invitations from Assad. Both Turkish and US-led coalition forces operate on Syrian territory without permission from Damascus.

    The full interview, which also includes bin Sultan's opinions on Syria, Qatar, Israel and Palestine, is set to be published in the coming days, Al-Masdar News reports.

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    Tags:
    diplomacy, Bandar bin Sultan, Barack Obama, United States, Saudi Arabia
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