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'Worst cover-up in the history of cover-ups': Trump lashes out at Saudi consulate murder

Turkish officials claim a 15-men team tortured, killed and dismembered the writer.

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, right, shakes hands with Salah Khashoggi (victim's son) after they received him in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, right, shakes hands with Salah Khashoggi (victim's son) after they received him in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
Image: AP

PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP has criticised the Saudi operation that killed journalist Jamal Khashoggi, calling it one of the “worst cover-ups in the history of cover-ups”.

Trump told reporters in the Oval Office that he’s expecting a full report on the killing soon.

But he said: “They had a very bad original concept” and it was “carried out poorly”.

He added that the events after Khashoggi’s death were “the worst cover-up ever”.

Saudi Arabia has claimed Khashoggi, a writer for The Washington Post who wrote critically about Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, died accidentally in a brawl at the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul on October 2.

But Turkish officials say a 15-men team tortured, killed and dismembered the writer and say Saudi officials had planned the killing for days.

The US is also revoking the visas of Saudis found to be involved in the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi inside the kingdom’s consulate in Istanbul, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Tuesday.

“These penalties will not be the last word,” Pompeo told reporters.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said earlier today the “savage murder” of journalist Jamal Khashoggi at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul was meticulously planned, and demanded  that all those linked to the killing face punishment.

Erdogan, who had promised that his speech to lawmakers in Ankara would reveal the “naked truth” about the killing, did provide a host of new details. 

But the president acknowledged Turkey was still searching for answers to key questions, including who gave the order.

After more than two weeks of near silence, Saudi Arabia on Saturday admitted that Khashoggi, 59, was killed in its Istanbul consulate.

A former royal family insider turned critic of the Saudi crown prince, Khashoggidisappeared after he entered the consulate on October 2 to collect a document for his upcoming marriage.

Erdogan’s revelations of careful planning contradicted the Saudi version of an operation gone wrong. Vice President Mike Pence vowed Tuesday the United States would “demand answers” from Riyadh.

The murder of the Washington Post contributor has severely dented the international reputation of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. The killing also overshadowed a major investment forum that opened in Riyadh Tuesday.

G7 foreign ministers meeting in London condemned, in a joint statement, the killing of Khashoggi and said Saudi Arabia’s explanations leave “many questions unanswered”.

With reporting by © – AFP, 2018.

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