TEHRAN (Press Shia) – US President Donald Trump took credit for Saudi Arabia's political shakeup which resulted in the elevation of Mohammed bin Salman to the position of crown prince last year, according to a startling account of his administration's first year in the White House.
The suggested claim is included in Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House, a controversial new book by Michael Wolff which reveals, among others, the US president's close connections to Saudi Arabia, according to the Qatari media network Al Jazeera.
"We've put our man on top," Trump is said to have claimed to friends, according to the book, after Saudi King Salman removed his nephew Crown Prince Mohammed bin Nayef as next-in-line to the throne and replaced him with his, Mohammed bin Salman, in June 2017.
The move marked a departure from Saudi Arabia’s line of succession, breaking with decades of custom maintained by the Kingdom’s royal family.
The veracity of the book's claims has been contested by Trump, who said on Friday Wolff's book is "full of lies”.
Trump visited Saudi Arabia's capital, Riyadh, in May 2017 at the beginning of his first overseas tour as US president, having hosted Mohammed bin Salman in Washington, DC, two months earlier.
The US president has been openly supportive of the Saudi crown prince in recent months, notably praising him after the dismissals and arrests of a number of senior ministers, businessmen and princes as part of an alleged anti-graft campaign.
"I have great confidence in King Salman and the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia, they know exactly what they are doing," Trump said on Twitter two days after the anti-corruption crackdown began on November 4.