The Latest: Khashoggi’s fiancée put under police protection
ISTANBUL (AP) — The latest on the fallout from the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi at his country’s consulate in Istanbul (all times local):
Turkey’s official news agency says the fiancée of Saudi writer Jamal Khashoggi has been given 24-hour police protection.
Anadolu news agency reported that the decision was made by the Istanbul governor’s office Sunday, citing an anonymous security official.
Hatice Cengiz, a Turkish national, waited for Khashoggi outside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on Oct. 2, where he was to get papers for their planned marriage. She alerted authorities after the writer did not emerge from the building.
Saudi officials on Saturday confirmed that he died, after denying knowledge of his circumstances for over two weeks.
The report did not say why Cengiz was given police protection.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel says she backs a freeze on arms exports to Saudi Arabia following the killing of writer Jamal Khashoggi.
Merkel told reporters in Berlin on Sunday that “I agree with all those who say that the already limited arms exports... can’t take place in the situation we’re currently in.”
Germany’s Foreign Minister Heiko Maas had called Saturday for a halt to German arms exports while the investigation into Khashoggi’s death continues.
Merkel reiterated her condemnation of the killing at Saudi’s consulate in Istanbul, and her earlier call for the kingdom to provide further clarification on the incident and hold those responsible to account.
She said Germany would discuss further “reactions” to the case with its international partners.
Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister has called the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi earlier this month at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul a “rogue operation” and an “aberration.”
Adel al-Jubeir told Fox News on Sunday that those responsible will be held accountable for “this huge and grave mistake.”
He extended his condolences to the family of the slain journalist.
“We can feel their pain and we wish this didn’t happen and I wish that this could have been avoided,” he said.
Saudi Arabia finally admitted Friday that its agents killed Khashoggi after he entered the consulate on Oct. 2, but is denying that Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman or King Salman were involved.
Al-Jubeir echoed President Donald Trump’s warnings against rushing to judgment against Saudi leaders, saying, “There is the presumption of innocence until proven guilty,” and that some have “turned that upside down.” He adds Saudi officials do not know the whereabouts of Khashoggi’s remains.
A bipartisan group of U.S. lawmakers are accusing the crown prince of directing the operation. South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham said Sunday “I find it impossible to believe that the Crown Prince was not involved.”
President Donald Trump said Saturday he would speak to the crown prince “very soon” as he works to determine what, if any, consequences the U.S. ally will face for the killing of a dissident journalist.
Trump said he planned to consult with Congress to devise a response. “We’ll have an answer by probably Tuesday or so,” he said.
Trump has repeatedly said over the last week that he opposes any effort to impede more than $100 billion in U.S. arms sales to Saudi Arabia, but that he would consider sanctions on the kingdom.
On Friday, during a round table in Arizona, asked if he believed whether the Saudi explanation that Khashoggi was killed during a “fistfight” with more than a dozen agents was credible, he said: “I do. I do.”
But Saturday, in an interview with The Washington Post, Trump said, “Obviously there’s been deception and there’s been lies.”
Still Trump has offered kind words for Mohammed bin Salman, and his father, King Salman, repeating their denials that they were involved in Khashoggi’s killing.
Britain, Germany and France have issued a joint statement condemning the killing of writer Jamal Khashoggi, saying there is an “urgent need for clarification of exactly what happened.”
In a statement Sunday, the governments said attacks on journalists are unacceptable and “of utmost concern to our three nations.” They said the “hypotheses” proposed so far in the Saudi investigation need to be backed by facts to be considered credible.
They stressed that more efforts are needed in order to establish the truth, and added that they reserve judgment until they receive further explanation.
Saudi authorities have said Khashoggi died in an “altercation” with Saudi officials at the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul on Oct. 2. Turkish officials suspect a team of Saudi agents was sent to assassinate him.
Turkey’s president says he will announce details of the Turkish investigation into the death of Saudi writer Jamal Khashoggi’s on Tuesday.
Speaking to supporters on Sunday in Istanbul, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Turkey is seeking justice and that he will “go into detail” in a speech to ruling party members in parliament.
Turkish pro-government media say a hit squad traveled from Saudi Arabia to kill Khashoggi in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul after he entered the building on Oct. 2. Saudi Arabia has acknowledged that the critic died there, though says his death was the result of a “fistfight.”
The Saudi account has been met with widespread international skepticism and allegations of a cover-up.
A longtime U.S. critic of Saudi Arabia says he feels certain that Crown Prince Mohammed directed the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
Sen. Rand Paul told “Fox News Sunday” that the U.S. “cannot continue to have relations with him and so I think he’s going to have to be replaced.”
The Kentucky Republican said that there’s growing support in Congress to stop selling American arms to the Saudis, even though President Donald Trump says he doesn’t want to jeopardize U.S. defense company jobs.
Paul said that he doesn’t believe that “arms should ever be seen as a jobs program,” adding that the Saudis are using U.S. arms in the war in Yemen where civilians are being killed.
“I would cut off arms sales. It’s the only thing the Saudis will listen to,” said Paul. “I don’t think we need the Saudis. The Saudis need us much more than we need them.”
The chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee says Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman “crossed a line” in the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi and must pay a price.
Tennessee Republican Bob Corker says that based on his briefings he believes the royal known as MBS was behind the killing of the Saudi critic. He is being interviewed on CNN’s “State of the Union.”
Corker tells CNN’s “State of the Union” that the crown prince has “now crossed a line and there has to be a punishment and a price paid for that.”
Corker is also calling on Turkey, which has said it has tapes from Khashoggi’s killing inside the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul, to turn them over to the United States.
He says of the NATO ally: “The Turks have been talking more to the media than they have us.”
The European Union says the emerging details of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi’s death are “deeply troubling” and that a “continued thorough, credible and transparent investigation” is needed.
Saudi authorities have said Khashoggi died in a “brawl” with Saudi officials at the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul on Oct. 2, the latest in a series of conflicting explanations for his death. Turkish officials suspect a team of Saudi agents was sent to assassinate him.
Saudi Arabia said 18 Saudi suspects were in custody and intelligence officials had been fired. But critics believe the complex scheme that led to Khashoggi’s death could not have occurred without the knowledge of Mohammed bin Salman, the country’s powerful 33-year-old crown prince.
The EU said the continuing investigation should bring “proper clarity on the circumstances of the killing and ensuring full accountability of all those responsible for it.”
President Donald Trump says he needs to learn more about the killing of a Saudi journalist and will be working with Congress on the U.S. response.
Speaking late Saturday after a campaign rally in Nevada, he said he will be talking to Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman soon.
Saudi authorities announced that Jamal Khashoggi, a Washington Post columnist, died in the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul after a fistfight with officials there. That explanation has sparked allegations of a cover-up intended to shield the powerful crown prince.
Trump initially said he believed the Saudi account, but on Saturday he said he still does not know where Khashoggi’s body is.
Trump said: “We’d like to find out where it is and what happened... And I think we’re inching our way there.”