Bahrain minister calls for Uber boycott over Khashoggi case

Bahrain minister calls for Uber boycott over Khashoggi case
Bahrain’s foreign minister calls for a boycott of Uber after its chief executive officer said he will not attend a business conference in the kingdom’s ally Saudi Arabia.
2 min read
15 October, 2018
Khalid bin Ahmed Al Khalifa called for the boycott of Uber in Bahrain [Getty]
Bahrain's Foreign Minister on Monday pushed for the boycott of ride-hailing app Uber, after its chief executive pulled out of a high-profile business conference in the kingdom's strong ally Saudi Arabia.

Khalid bin Ahmed Al Khalifa tweeted two hashtags calling for the boycott of Uber in Saudi Arabia and in Bahrain.

He also tweeted a third hashtag that urged his followers to boycott anyone who boycotts Saudi Arabia, referring to the companies that have pulled out of the Future Investment Initiative [FII], dubbed "Davos in the desert".

Uber Chief Executive Dara Khosrowshahi was one of many big names to pull out of the conference amid growing concern over concern over the fate of missing journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

"I'm very troubled by the reports to date about Jamal Khashoggi," Khosrowshahi said in a statement last week.

"We are following the situation closely, and unless a substantially different set of fact emerges, I won't be attending the FII conference in Riyadh."

The Uber chief's withdrawal from the FII follows a growing list of top business people, media figures and organisations who have announced their non-participation in the conference.

So far, Virgin group founder Richard BransonLos Angeles Times owner Patrick Soon-Shiong, AOL co-founder Steve Case, The Huffington Post co-founder Arianna Huffington, Viacom CEO Bob Bakish and the New York Times have all reportedly pulled out of the conference over the Khashoggi case.

Calls have been made for other attendees to withdraw their support over Khashoggi's suspected murder.

Saudi Arabia's sovereign wealth fund, which hosts the FFI, is one of Uber's largest investors. In 2016, it invested $3.5 billion in Uber.