Pompeo says US takes Saudi case 'seriously'

Gladys Abbott
October 18, 2018

His killers later beheaded and dismembered him, it said. "They didn't want to either".

Turkish officials have said they believe Khashoggi, a Washington Post columnist and a prominently critic of the authoritarian kingdom's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, was murdered at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 2 and his body removed.

Last week, Trump said during an interview that he will impose severe punishment if Saudi Arabia is confirmed to be behind Khashoggi's alleged death.

The president, speaking to reporters at the White House, said he was not sure if audio exists - but added that it "probably does". That, Wright says, is an "enormous gamble" by Mr. Trump.

The recording also revealed Mr Khashoggi had fingers cut off and was told to "shut up" or face being killed, Yeni Safak reported.

Trump on Wednesday denied he was covering for the longtime USA ally.

"No, not at all", he declared.

A Turkish daily on Wednesday claimed it has accessed audio recordings that indicate Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi was tortured before he was decapitated inside Riyadh's consulate in Istanbul.

The top United States diplomat said that in Saudi Arabia he stressed the "importance of them conducting a complete investigation into the disappearance" and Riyadh had vowed to do this.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo met with King Salman on Tuesday morning, before meeting with the Crown Prince.

On Wednesday, Pompeo visited Ankara, Turkey to hold talks with Turkish officials about the case. Kavanaugh denied the allegations and was confirmed to the court. I don't like that.

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Meanwhile, the consul general himself, Mohammed Otaibi, left Turkey on Tuesday, the semiofficial Anadolu news agency said.

Trump cited the Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman's denial in a series of tweets. The president told the AP on Tuesday that that description was informed by his "feeling" from his conversation with Salman and that the king did not use the term.

"The best metaphor for Mr. Pompeo's diplomacy seemed to be what reporters witnessed outside the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul, where Mr. Khashoggi was last seen October 2: the arrival of a cleaning crew with buckets, mops and fluids".

Pompeo welcomed Saudi Arabia's support of the Turkish authorities' investigation, the State Department said, noting that both agreed on the need for an investigation "that provides answers".

"They made a commitment that they would show the entire world the results of their investigation", said Pompeo, adding Saudi also vowed that no-one would have immunity.

In the meantime, there were signs at home that Trump's party was growing uncomfortable with his willingness to defend the Saudis.

"This guy has got to go", Graham, R-S.C., said on "Fox and Friends". Lindsey Graham of SC, turning to speak to the camera. Since Mr. Khashoggi's disappearance, powerful US executives have withdrawn from a high-profile investment conference in Riyadh this month.

This is while Brett H. McGurk, the USA special envoy to the US-led coalition purportedly fighting Daesh, asserted that Pompeo's visit to Saudi Arabia and the $100 million payment were not connected.

"If a country engages in activity that is unlawful it's unacceptable", he said. "I think we have to find out what happened first".

On Oct. 2, Khashoggi went to the consulate general of Saudi Arabia in Istanbul for some documents.

It said al-Otaibi can be heard on one tape saying during Khashoggi's torture: "Do this outside".

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