Ramaphosa cancels Saudi trip amid outcry over murdered journalist

Oct 22, 2018, 00:22
Ramaphosa cancels Saudi trip amid outcry over murdered journalist

October 15: almost two weeks after Khashoggi's disappearance, teams of Turkish investigators enter the consulate to start their search.

After the Saudi admission on Saturday, Omer Celik, spokesman for Erdogan's ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), said Ankara was not putting the blame on anyone in advance.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Sunday that Germany would put arms exports to the kingdom on hold for the time being, given the unexplained circumstances of dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi's death. The kingdom also said that 18 suspects were in custody and that intelligence officials had been fired.

"The Saudi "explanation" for murdering journalist and Virginia resident Jamal Khashoggi in a consulate_a fistfight gone wrong_is insulting", tweeted Sen.

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has vowed to uncover the truth behind Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi's killing, sources close to the Turkish leader have told Middle East Eye, as worldwide outrage over Riyadh's most recent explanation grows.

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President Donald Trump has said that the consequences for the Saudis "will have to be very severe" if they are found to have killed him, but has insisted that more facts must be known before making assumptions.

Khashoggi left Saudi Arabia a year ago fearing he'd be arrested, and became a USA resident.

The disappearance of Khashoggi has provoked global criticism of Saudi Arabia's de-facto ruler, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, and convulsed the kingdom as it struggles to respond to increasing worldwide pressure to explain the journalist's fate. "Now the same government that lied to the world, claiming for weeks that it had no knowledge of Khashoggi's fate, expects us to believe he died in a fight", said CPJ Executive Director Joel Simon.

"First, we condemn this act in the strongest terms", she said. Gen. Ahmed al-Assiri and Saud al-Qahtani, a top adviser to Crown Prince Salman - as part of an investigation into the Khashoggi case.

"We can feel their pain and we wish this didn't happen and I wish that this could have been avoided", he said.

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A source with close connections to the Saudi Royal Palace told CNN that Saudis concluded that Khashoggi's cause of death was a chokehold or strangulation, but officials provided no evidence to support the conclusion.

In response to the comments by the Kentucky senator, Mr Jubeir said he finds it "very surprising that somebody 6,000 miles away can be certain about an event that happened 6,000 miles away with no access to information or intelligence". "I do", he said.

However, he made clear he believed the Crown Prince Mohammed directed the murder.

USA intelligence officials contacted by The Times have declined to comment on the report, which has triggered unease on Capitol Hill, where congressional insiders say questions about the administration's handling of Khashoggi case could lead to a politically charged investigation going forward.

Australia announced it is withdrawing from an investment summit in Saudi Arabia later this month - joining a growing boycott that includes the US, UK, Dutch and French finance ministers over the Khashoggi killing.

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