'The world is watching', Kushner tells Saudi crown prince on Khashoggi

'The world is watching', Kushner tells Saudi crown prince on Khashoggi

Trump has previously called Saudi versions credible and sent conflicting signals on how the US should respond, last week calling the journalist's killing "very bad" but repeatedly emphasizing that he didn't want to endanger USA arms sales to Saudi Arabia, Saudi investment in the USA or the American alliance with the kingdom. "Somebody really messed up", Trump said Tuesday.

Khashoggi vanished after he entered the Saudi Arabian consulate in Istanbul on October 2 to retrieve marriage documents.

Trump has repeatedly declined to say if Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman was behind or aware of the killing as many USA officials and foreign governments have concluded, in part because numerous crown prince's associates were involved in the killing.

Trump characterized Erdogan's remarks as "pretty rough", though he said "I haven't gotten a full recap".

He reiterated Trump's earlier claim that strong US-Saudi ties are essential to bolster the US's fight against terrorism, especially as it pertains to Iran. "And they had the worst cover-up ever", Trump told reporters in the Oval Office Tuesday.

The United States has also vowed to revoke visas of some of those believed to be responsible.

"We're making very clear that the United States does not tolerate this kind of ruthless action to silence Khashoggi, a journalist, through violence", Pompeo told reporters. "This brutal murder of a journalist, of an innocent man, of a dissident, will not go without an American response and, I expect, without an worldwide response", US Vice President Mike Pence said at an event hosted by The Washington Post.

Tabling new allegations that Saudi officials scoped out rural areas outside Istanbul the day before Khashoggi's murder, the president said Riyadh's suggestion that the killing was a rogue extradition operation gone wrong was unsatisfactory and Turkey's investigation was ongoing.

CIA Director Gina Haspel is traveling to Ankara, where she's expected to review the evidence Turkish investigators have gathered - possibly including audio recordings that anonymous investigators have spoken about to journalists, but that have not been shared to date, according to Turkish officials.

World leaders and human rights groups have criticised the latest Saudi version of events, however, saying their explanation lacks any credibility, as calls for an independent probe into what happened have grown louder. "We don't know where the body is", Jubeir said.

"President Erdogan's statement this morning underscores the fact there remain questions which only the Saudis have the answers to", Prime Minster Theresa May's spokesman said. Another team went to the consulate and removed the hard disk from its security camera, he said. The president said the crown prince "strongly said he had nothing to do with it".

Kushner, Trump's son-in-law and senior adviser, has cultivated a personal relationship with Prince Mohammed and urged Trump to act with caution to avoid upsetting a critical strategic and economic relationship, a senior administration official said.

Related Articles