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Uber CEO backtracks after calling Saudi murder of Khashoggi "a mistake"

Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi told "Axios on HBO" that the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi was "a mistake" by the Saudi government, and then he compared it to Uber's self-driving accident in which a woman died.

Khosrowshahi tweeted Monday: "There's no forgiving or forgetting what happened to Jamal Khashoggi & I was wrong to call it a “mistake.” As I told @danprimack after our interview, I said something in the moment I don't believe. Our investors have long known my views here & I'm sorry I wasn’t as clear on Axios."


An hour after the interview, Khosrowshahi called Axios to express regret for the language he used. The next day he sent the following statement:

  • "I said something in the moment that I do not believe. When it comes to Jamal Khashoggi, his murder was reprehensible and should not be forgotten or excused."

Why it matters: Saudi Arabia is Uber's fifth-largest shareholder and the head of Saudi Arabia's sovereign wealth fund is on its board of directors.

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