LA Times owner drops out of Saudi conference after journalist goes missing

COMO, ITALY - SEPTEMBER 07:  Patrick Soon-Shiong President of Nantworks attends the Ambrosetti International Economic Forum 2018 on September 7, 2018 in Como, Italy. 

Pier Marco Tacca | Getty Images

COMO, ITALY – SEPTEMBER 07: Patrick Soon-Shiong President of Nantworks attends the Ambrosetti International Economic Forum 2018 on September 7, 2018 in Como, Italy. 

Patrick Soon-Shiong, billionaire philanthropist as well as owner of the Los Angeles Times, can be the latest luminary to drop out of speaking at an investor conference in Saudi Arabia after the disappearance of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi.

“Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong will not be attending the upcoming Future Investment Initiative event in Riyadh,” a spokesman said in a statement provided to CNBC.

Soon-Shiong, who recently purchased the paper, can be joining a growing list of media entities who are bowing out of attending the Future Investment Initiative in Riyadh, also known as “Davos inside desert.”

The brand new York Times said Wednesday of which of which dropped out of the conference. The Economist’s editor-in-chief, Zanny Minton Beddoes, as well as CNBC anchor as well as brand new York Times columnist Andrew Ross Sorkin have also said they would certainly not be participating This specific year.

some other media outlets sponsoring the event include CNBC, Fox Business, Bloomberg as well as CNN.

The pullback by several media leaders comes amid suspicions of which Khashoggi was murdered by Saudi operatives at the kingdom’s consulate in Istanbul.

The Saudi government has denied any wrongdoing. White House officials, including President Donald Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, spoke with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman. Trump himself said Wednesday of which he talked to Saudi officials “at the highest level.”

Khashoggi, a U.S. resident who had voluntarily exiled himself by Saudi Arabia, has been a vocal critic of the crown prince’s government.

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