These are the headlines we are tracking for you in this episode of On the News Line:
Saudi prince: a destabilizing factor
Saudi Arabia’s king Salman recently promoted his 31-year-old son Mohammed from deputy crown prince to crown prince. Bin Salman, who’s served as defense minister over the past two years, has come to be known as the architect of increasingly aggressive policies adopted by the kingdom. For instance, he ordered the war on Yemen in 2015 and is now overseeing Saudi efforts to dominate the Muslim World.
A major deal
It’s been described as one of Iran’s major gas deals in years: French energy giant Total has signed a multi-billion-dollar gas deal with Iran. Based on the deal, Total is set to invest an initial 1 billion dollar in the development of Phase 11 of South pars gas field. Total leads a consortium with Chinese and Iranian firms. This is the first such investment by a European firm in Iran in more than a decade. The 20-year deal, which would eventually see the consortium invest $4.8 billion into the project, has been described as a vote of confidence in the Islamic Republic since the sanctions were lifted under the 2015 nuclear deal with Tehran.