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MIT report recommends against cutting ties with Saudi Arabia

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — An MIT review of the school’s ties to Saudi Arabia has concluded that it should not break with the kingdom following the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Associate Provost Richard Lester made the recommendation Thursday after the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s president asked him to undertake the review. President Rafael Reif will make the final decision after gathering feedback.

An Associated Press analysis of federal data found that Saudi Arabia’s national oil company, Saudi Aramco, has given $4 million to MIT over the last decade.

Lester’s report says none of the Saudi groups that provide money to MIT played a role in Khashoggi’s killing, and there’s no “compelling case” to cut ties.

The report says most of MIT’s funding from the kingdom supports research led by faculty or senior scientists.

Collin Binkley, The Associated Press