United States President Donald Trump said on Tuesday that Saudi Arabia has started a full investigation into the disappearance of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, who hasn't been seen since entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul two weeks ago. He changed his tone once again late this week, raising the prospect of sanctions against Riyadh.
The European Union's foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini has described Khashoggi's death as a "shocking violation" of global conventions, and on Saturday Canada's Foreign Minister Chrsytia Freeland said "the explanations offered to date lack consistency and credibility".
The president said: "We'd like to find out where it is and what happened..."
The comment was made after on Saturday Saudi Arabia's public prosecutor said that Khashoggi died in the diplomatic mission on October 2 in a fight with people who came to Istanbul to rendition him.
The Saudi explanation - that an argument in the consulate led to a fatal brawl - is at odds with the conclusions of Turkish investigators, who believe that Khashoggi was deliberately killed by a team of Saudi agents who were dispatched to Istanbul.
However, he has pushed back again any effort to cancel the mega United States dollars 110 billion arms deal with Saudi Arabia asserting that such a move will hurt USA economy and jobs. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.
Officials initially insisted Mr. Khashoggi had walked out of the.
In the interview, Corker said Saudi Arabia had 'lost all credibility as it relates to explaining what has happened'.More news: Canelo Alvarez Signs Biggest Sports Contract Ever - 10 Fights for $365M
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has said 18 persons have been arrested and an in-depth investigation into the case is being conducted.
Senior aides close to the prince have been fired over Khashoggi's killing, and 18 suspects have been arrested.
Turkish pro-government media had said for days that an official hit squad had traveled from Saudi Arabia to kill Khashoggi. King Salman had handed the day-to-day running of Saudi Arabia to his son, whose reputation has been tarnished by the Khashoggi affair.
Trump said it was "possible" that the powerful Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman did not know about the killing.
Oliver Sprague, Amnesty International UK's arms expert, said the UK should have halted arms sales to Saudi Arabia long ago over its military intervention in Yemen.
The king also ordered the formation of a ministerial committee headed by Prince Mohammed to restructure the general intelligence agency, state media said, suggesting the prince still retained wide-ranging authority. Saudi Arabia ranked sixth past year with approved sales of 254 million euros ($292 million), mostly reflecting deliveries of patrol boats, according to a government report published in June.
"I'm sure I'll be speaking with the president before I go there", Mnuchin said.