Saudi Arabia preparing to admit Jamal Khashoggi died in consulate

Saudi Arabia preparing to admit Jamal Khashoggi died in consulate

President Trump's suggestion that "rogue killers" may be responsible for Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi's disappearance suggests he may let Saudi Arabia off the hook for another violation, said Sarah Leah Whitson of Human Rights Watch.

Khashoggi, a U.S. resident and a Riyadh critic columnist at The Washington Post, vanished after entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul two weeks ago to get marriage documents.

Trump wrote: "Just spoke to the King of Saudi Arabia who denies any knowledge of whatever may have happened 'to our Saudi Arabian citizen.' He said that they are working closely with Turkey to find answer".

In Istanbul, Turkish authorities have been allowed into the consulate to conduct searches. "It sounded to me like maybe these could have been rogue killers".

Earlier Ankara speculated that Khashoggi was likely murdered inside the consulate by a team of assassins sent by Riyadh - a claim which Saudi Arabia firmly denies.

Prince Mohammed, 33, a son of King Salman, consolidated his control in June 2017 when he was named Crown Prince to replace his cousin, Prince Mohammed bin Nayef, who was sacked.

However, unconfirmed reports in the United States media suggest Saudi Arabia is preparing to admit that Mr Khashoggi died as a result of an interrogation that went wrong and that the original intention had been to abduct him.

Turkish officials believe he was murdered there and his body removed with the case provoking an global outcry against Saudi Arabia.

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US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo arrived in Riyadh this morning and has held talks with Saudi King Salman. Police planned a second search, this one of the Saudi consul's home in Istanbul, a Turkish Foreign Ministry official said.

The search came after Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and King Salman also had their first telephone talks since the controversy erupted, in what appeared to be a conciliatory conversation according to official readouts.

In other words: The Saudis' official defense is, reportedly, "We only wanted to torture and kidnap the dissident journalist, but the Crown Prince's friend got a little too enthusiastic, and accidentally killed him".

The 58-year-old journalist and Washington Post contributor has been missing since he entered the Saudi consulate to gather documents for marriage last week.

One person familiar with the Saudi plans said on Monday that the Saudi government was preparing to describe a scenario that would protect the prince from any blame. Lindsey O. Graham (S.C.) going so far as to refer to a "game-changer" in U.S. -Saudi relations.

"I can not support President Trump's proposed arms sales given the fact that Saudi Arabia is apparently complicit in the disappearance of Khashoggi", he said. After shedding about 7 per cent on Sunday, the market rebounded at the end of trading the following day up 4.1 per cent. The uncertainty regarding Mr Khashoggi's fate has also led to a number of business executives like Virgin's Richard Branson and JP Morgan's Jamie Dimon as well as media partners withdrawing from an upcoming investment conference in Riyadh this month.

"It should be a known fact that the Arabs never had a problem with antisemitism, but we need to state that over and over again", Khashoggi added, justifying the surprising Saudi presence at the event. Prince Mohammed told Reuters a year ago that Blackstone and BlackRock Inc were planning to open offices in the kingdom.

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