Severe punishment! US warns Saudi Arabia over mysterious death of journalist
United States President Donald Trump has warned that his administration will inflict "severe punishment" on Saudi Arabia if the kingdom is found to be responsible for the death of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
Khashoggi, a tough critic of the Saudi government, vanished on October 2 after visiting its consulate in the Turkish city of Istanbul.
Saudi Arabia has dismissed as “lies” allegations that it ordered his killing.
The country’s interior minister told reporters yesterday that his government was “keen to uncover the whole truth" behind Khashoggi’s killing and insisted that reports about “orders to kill" him are "baseless".
The British Broadcasting Corporation says a security source in Turkey has indicated that officials there have audio and video evidence showing that the journalist, who writes for the Washington Post, was murdered inside the consulate.
Turkey’s Foreign Minister, Mevut Cavusoglu, said Saudi Arabia was not yet co-operating with the investigation and urged the kingdom to allow Turkish officials to enter the consulate.
Declaring that the US will “get to the bottom” of Khashoggi’s mysterious death, Trump said he would be "very upset and angry” if Saudi Arabia was behind it.
“And there will be severe punishment," he said, while indicating that halting big military contracts with Saudi Arabia was not among the sanctions.
He explained that there are other forms of punishment than cancelling the contracts, which powers like Russia and China are interested in.
"I don't want to hurt jobs, I don't want to lose an order like that," Trump said.