ibusinesslines.com December 16, 2018

US Calls For "Transparent" Saudi Probe Into Journalist's Disappearance

09 October 2018, 10:55 | Erica Roy

Saudi Arabian journalist Jamal Khashoggi speaks on his cellphone at the World Economic Forum in Davos Switzerland

Saudi Arabian journalist Jamal Khashoggi speaks on his cellphone at the World Economic Forum in Davos Switzerland

US President Donald Trump said on Tuesday he does not know anything about Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi's disappearance.

Khashoggi (59) was last seen entering the Consulate on Tuesday.

The alleged murder has now provided the Turkish government with readymade fodder on a silver platter, who, in all likelihood, would exploit it to the hilt for its political advantages. "I know what everybody else knows - nothing", Trump said.

No evidence has been presented.

When was he last seen?

Saudi Arabia's Ambassador to the United States Prince Khalid Bin Salman has responded to what he termed as "grim and malicious" rumors over the investigation surrounding the disappearance of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

"Jamal was not killed and I do not believe he was killed", Hatice Cengiz posted.

He told her to call an adviser to President Erdogan if he did not return.

"Jamal is not dead".

In addition, Saudi media are claiming that the woman named "Khadijah" is "promoting herself as Jamal's fiancé", but is not known to Jamal's family and she is not his fiancé. But Mr Khashoggi thought he had the situation under control.

Saudi Arabian officials have invited Turkish experts and related officials to visit its consulate in Istanbul. The Post, which first published the photo, said "a person close to the investigation" shared the image with them, without elaborating. He told broadcaster CNN Turk that Khashoggi had not left the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, which he had entered on Tuesday to obtain documents for a forthcoming marriage, in "normal ways".

He said police were examining CCTV footage of entrances and exits at the consulate and Istanbul airport.

What have the Saudis said?

His disappearance has sparked global concerns, particularly after Turkish sources said over the weekend that authorities believed he had been killed inside the consulate.

A former government adviser who has been critical of some policies of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and Riyadh's intervention in the war in Yemen, Mr Khashoggi has lived in self-imposed exile in the United States since past year to avoid possible arrest. It was not immediately clear whether the second plane, pictured here, which left Istanbul for Egypt, was also searched.

"This will be a file between Saudi Arabia and us", the Turkish official warned.

The whole case looks like an Agatha Christie mystery - one that is, however, going to kick up a diplomatic row further impairing relations between Riyadh and Ankara.

Turkey also backed Saudi Arabia's arch-rival Iran during its USA trade disputes.

Journalists and activists gathered outside the Saudi consulate on Monday demanding information on Khashoggi's fate. It is very, very upsetting for us that it happened in our country.

Saudi Arabia has always been a pillar of USA policy in the Middle East, and while the relationship was rocky during President Obama's tenure, Trump has embraced Riyadh.

"And that happened", the crown prince told Bloomberg on Friday in a wide-ranging interview. He wrote columns for the Washington Post and the Guardian.

The crown prince has unveiled reforms praised by the West while carrying out an apparent crackdown on dissent.

Meanwhile, the United Nations human rights office urged both countries to investigate the case. Saudi officials have said that he left shortly afterwards but his fiancée, who was waiting outside, said he never appeared. "To do otherwise would betray those who languish in prison". That's what I do on Washington Post.

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