Friday, 16 November, 2018


Saudi crown prince vows to bring Khashoggi killers to justice

Trump Says Jamal Khashoggi Killing'One Of Worst Cover-Ups In History US to revoke visas of Saudis implicated in killing of writer
Conrad Doyle | 27 October, 2018, 09:02

Trump offered his most stinging indictment yet of a Saudi effort to silence a dissident journalist, calling the series of events that led to Khashoggi's death "the worst cover up ever".

In announcing the measures, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said he is working with the Treasury Department on whether to impose sanctions on those responsible for the journalist's death.

"How should a real investigation in Saudi Arabia work when one of the main suspects is the crown prince MBS?" said a Turkish senior official, referring to the crown prince by his initials.

Khashoggi, a Washington Post columnist and a supporter-turned-critic of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, disappeared on 2 October after entering the consulate in Istanbul.

Turkish pro-government media reported on Wednesday that Turkish intelligence had shared "all the evidence" from its probe with the CIA.

Mr Trump told the "Journal" he wanted to believe the prince when he said that lower level officials were to blame for the killing at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul.

CIA Director Gina Haspel listened to an audio tape of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi's interrogation and murder during a visit to Turkey, The Washington Post reported Wednesday.

Khashoggi was living in exile in the United States and had planned to move to Istanbul and marry his Turkish fiancée. "The family wants to know and they want to perform their last duty", Cavusoglu said, referring to hopes for the writer's burial.

While Turkish officials, speaking anonymously, and some senior US lawmakers have suggested the crown prince himself likely had a role in approving the killing, a confident sounding Prince Salman vowed on Wednesday that the kingdom run by his family for nearly 100 years would help get to the bottom of what he called a "heinous crime".

Mr Trump's comments in recent days have ranged from threatening Saudi Arabia with "very severe" consequences and mentioning possible economic sanctions, to more conciliatory remarks highlighting the country's role as a United States ally against Iran and Islamist militants, as well as a major purchaser of USA arms.

Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has requested the extradition of 18 Saudi officials suspected of murdering journalist Jamal Khashoggi inside the kingdom's Istanbul consulate.

But secretary of state Mike Pompeo said the United States had identified some of the Saudi government and security officials it believed were involved in Khashoggi's murder and would take appropriate actions including revoking USA visas.

A Turkish official previously confirmed that investigators had broadened their search for Khashoggi's body to wooded areas around the city.

Mr Erdogan called the death of Khashoggi an "attack on Turkey's reputation" which "will not be able to detain us from the seeking the truth".

On Tuesday there were similar conflicting reports over whether Khashoggi's belongings had been found in suitcases in a Saudi diplomatic vehicle.

The shifting explanations indicate Saudi Arabia is scrambling for a way out of the crisis that has enveloped the world's largest oil exporter and a major US ally in the Middle East.

The whereabouts of Khashoggi's corpse still remain unknown.

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