Missing journalist's fiancée 'in a state of deep confusion and sadness'

Leroy Wright
October 14, 2018

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo called for a thorough probe by ally Saudi Arabia into the disappearance of journalist Jamal Khashoggi (picture).

The harsh words from the longtime lawmaker and close confidant of President Donald Trump, who discussed Khashoggi's disappearance shortly after Graham did, could indicate a forthcoming strain on the good will built between the USA and Saudi Arabia during the Trump administration.

Global news agencies reported that Turkish officials, who asked not to be identified, stated last Saturday evening that the Saudi journalist was killed by a team that arrived to Istanbul for a definite objective and left on the same day, while Turkish sources reported that those who entered the consulate during the presence of Khashoggi were from the Saudi Arabian security services.

Turkish officials fear Mr Khashoggi was killed by the Saudis after walking into the kingdom's consulate in Istanbul on October 2, though they have not offered any evidence to support that. The global implications of Mr Khashoggi's disappearance deepened after the "Washington Post" reported that United States intelligence was aware the Saudi government was planning to kidnap the journalist.

The Post, citing anonymous USA officials familiar with the intelligence, said Prince Mohammed ordered an operation to lure Khashoggi from his home in Virginia, where he lived most recently, to Saudi Arabia and then detain him. A third appeared to be a special forces soldier who worked as a bodyguard to Mohammed bin Salman, the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia.

Khashoggi has not been seen since entering the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul on October 2.

"If this is true - that the Saudis lured a USA resident into their consulate and murdered him - it should represent a fundamental break in our relationship with Saudi Arabia". The Saudi Consulate has said CCTV cameras were not working the day Khashoggi disappeared.

Mr Erdogan has previously challenged Saudi Arabia to provide proof of its version of events - that Mr Khashoggi, a prominent critic of the Saudi monarchy, had left the consulate "after a few minutes or one hour".

Saudi slams 'baseless lies' over Khashoggi's disappearance
The President said that Cengiz wrote "a attractive letter" to him and first lady Melania Trump and that they would welcome her. Turkey said on Thursday it had accepted a proposal from Saudi Arabia to cooperate on the investigation.

'We want to see what's going on. Sabah on Wednesday revealed the identities of what it called a "mysterious" 15-member "assassination squad" who were allegedly involved in Saudi writer and government critic Jamal Khashoggi's disappearance.

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevut Cavusoglu said Saudi Arabia was not yet co-operating with the investigation despite a statement from Saudi Interior Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Saud bin Naif bin Abdulaziz saying his nation wanted to uncover "the whole truth", the BBC said.

"What has been circulating in terms of supposed orders to kill Jamal (Khashoggi) are outright lies and baseless allegations against the Kingdom's government, which is committed to its principles, rules and traditions and is in compliance with worldwide laws and conventions", Abdulaziz said. Saudi Arabia has denied the allegation.

Trump, who took his first overseas trip as USA president to the kingdom and whose son-in-law Jared Kushner has close ties to Prince Mohammed, said Tuesday he had not yet talked to the Saudis about Khashoggi, "but I will be at some point", without elaborating.

On Wednesday, Corker told reporters that the Senate would "take some action ourselves" over Khashoggi's disappearance.

Democratic Sen. Chris Murphy voiced doubt there would be support in Congress to approve another arms sale to Saudi Arabia - although lawmakers haven't blocked sales before. But Mr Khashoggi's disappearance, and suspicions he may have been targeted over his criticism of the crown prince, have led several business leaders and media outlets to back out of an upcoming high-profile investment conference in Riyadh. A video caption says seven other men checked in at another nearby hotel at different times.

"I think our country has had enough of this". When asked whether he's demanding answers from the Saudis, Trump said, "Yes, we are".

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