By Chuck Ross
William Burns, the nominee for CIA director, received a Super Bowl group trip from Saudi Arabia’s ambassador when he served as president of a prominent foreign policy think tank, according to responses he provided to the Senate Intelligence Committee ahead of his confirmation hearing on Wednesday.
Burns disclosed other gifts from foreign dignitaries he received while at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.
The veteran diplomat does not say in the disclosure what year he received the Super Bowl group trip, or who else attended. He joined the think tank in 2015, after leaving the State Department, where he served as deputy secretary of state.
Burns also disclosed bottles of wine he received from France’s ambassador, holiday baskets from the King of Jordan, wine and other gifts from Georgia’s ambassador and wine from Italy’s ambassador.
The Biden administration has signaled it will take a tougher approach to Saudi Arabia than did the Trump administration, in part because of the Saudi government’s alleged involvement in the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
The administration is widely expected to soon release a report that links Saudi Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman to the 2018 killing.
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