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Saudi Arabia Eying China to Build Nuclear Power Program as Part of an Effort to Pressure U.S.

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman is reportedly weighing offers from both France and China to build a civilian nuclear power program. SPA / AFP

The U.S. wants Saudi Arabia to normalize ties with Israel, Saudi Arabia wants to build a civilian nuclear power program but the U.S. doesn’t want Riyadh to enrich its own uranium for fear it could be used to build weapons — so Saudi Arabia turns to China as leverage against the U.S.

The state-owned China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC) has already submitted a bid to build a plant in eastern Saudi Arabia, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal, highlighting that the pressure on the U.S. to make some concessions on the uranium issue is real.

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