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Iranian President Hassan Rouhani. Photo: Luiz Rampelotto/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani weighed in Wednesday on the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi at Saudi Arabia's consulate in Istanbul, saying he doesn't "think that a country would dare commit such a crime without the protection of America," reports Reuters, citing Iranian state media.

The big picture: Saudi Arabia is key to the U.S. pressure campaign against Iran, a regional enemy of the Saudis and a target of some of the Trump administration's most hawkish rhetoric. As one well-wired Republican told Axios' Mike Allen, "Constraining Iran is the priority and Saudi is a critical ally in that effort. That 'trumps' the horrible human rights violation."

Go deeper

Scoop: Trump tells confidants he plans to pardon Michael Flynn

Photo: Alex Wroblewski/Getty Images

President Trump has told confidants he plans to pardon his former national security adviser Michael Flynn, who pleaded guilty in December 2017 to lying to the FBI about his Russian contacts, two sources with direct knowledge of the discussions tell Axios.

Behind the scenes: Sources with direct knowledge of the discussions said Flynn will be part of a series of pardons that Trump issues between now and when he leaves office.

Erica Pandey, author of @Work
4 hours ago - World

Remote work shakes up geopolitics

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

The global adoption of remote work may leave the rising powers in the East behind.

The big picture: Despite India's and China's economic might, these countries have far fewer remote jobs than the U.S. or Europe. That's affecting the emerging economies' resilience amid the pandemic.

Trump gives Biden access to presidential intelligence briefings

Photo: Mark Makela/Getty Images

The Trump White House on Tuesday gave President-elect Biden access to daily presidential intelligence briefings, a source familiar with the matter tells Axios.

Why it matters: Trump has refused to share the briefs until now, as he continues to challenge the result of the election and declines to concede. The president's acquiescence comes as another sign that the transition to a Biden administration is taking place.