Published: Sat, October 20, 2018
Global News | By Blake Casey

Trump comments after Saudi Arabia admits Khashoggi died in consulate

Trump comments after Saudi Arabia admits Khashoggi died in consulate

Oct 6: Turkish officials say they believe the columnist was killed inside the consulate, before being moved elsewhere.

He visited the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 2 to sort out marriage paperwork, but his fiancee saw nothing more of him after he entered.

This acknowledgement comes after two weeks of denials from the Saudi government that it had anything to do with his disappearance.

The United States warned Friday of a "wide range" of responses should it determine that Saudi Arabia was behind the disappearance of Khashoggi, as Turkey widened its investigation into the scandal.

"Preliminary investigations conducted by the Public Prosecution showed that the suspects had traveled to Istanbul to meet with the citizen Jamal Khashoggi as there were indications of the possibility of his returning back to the country", the statement read. But this morning, Saudi Arabia said an investigation had found Khashoggi died in a fight inside the consulate and that 18 Saudis had been arrested in connection with the incident.

Speaking off the record to a Newsweek journalist working on a story about the Saudi leadership, he insisted he did not view himself as "an opposition" - he just wanted "a better Saudi Arabia".

Mr Trump says he'll work with Congress on what the United States response should be, but that he'd prefer not to hurt American companies and jobs by cutting billions of dollars in arms sales to the kingdom. It said Khashoggi's torturers had severed his fingers during an interrogation and later beheaded and dismembered him.

Al-Asiri was not part of the 15-man "hit squad" named by Turkish media, who Turkish officials suspect were involved in the killing of Khashoggi.

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King Salman has ordered Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to lead the charge of revamping the country's intelligence services.

US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and senior ministers from France, Britain and the Netherlands have abandoned plans to attend an October 23-25 investor conference in Riyadh, joining a list of Western business executives and putting the high-profile event in question. Canada, Russia, and Saudi Arabia, among other nations, consider the Muslim Brotherhood to be a terrorist group.

Trump sought to justify his muted response by pointing out the incident occurred in Turkey and that Khashoggi, a U.S. resident and columnist for the Washington Post, was "not a United States citizen".

Saudi authorities say a fight broke out in the consulate after which Khashoggi died.

Trump's son-in-law Kushner joined the family, including his wife Ivanka Trump, and First Lady Melania Trump on a trip to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia previous year.

Separately on Saturday, Reporters Without Borders (RSF) called on the global community to keep up pressure on Saudi Arabia to get the whole truth about Khashoggi's case.

The kingdom at the same time announced the firing of four top intelligence officials, including Maj Gen Ahmed bin Hassan Assiri, a one-time spokesman for the Saudi military's campaign in Yemen who later became a confidant of Prince Mohammed.

The case has also created a rift between the President Donald Trump's administration and some members of the U.S. Congress, including Republican Senator Lindsey Graham of SC who has explicitly accused Prince Mohammed of ordering Khashoggi killed. Eighteen people are also detained.

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