KUWAIT CITY(IAMINKUWAIT): The Attorney General of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia stated the following:
“Preliminary investigations carried out by the Public Prosecution Office into the disappearance of Saudi citizen Jamal bin Ahmad Khashoggi revealed that the discussions that took place between him and the persons who met him during his presence at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul led to a brawl and a fist fight with the citizen, Jamal Khashoggi, which led to his death, may his soul rest in peace.
“The Public Prosecutor’s Office affirms that its investigations continue in this case with 18 detainees so far, all of whom are Saudi nationals, in order to uncover and announce all the facts, and to hold accountable all those involved in this case and bring them to justice,” says a statement issued by Center for International Communication of the Ministry of Media, Saudi Arabia.
US President Donald Trump said Friday he found Saudi Arabia’s explanation about the death of dissident Khashoggi credible and termed it an “important first step.” Trump added if the US takes action, he does not want it to impact arms sales to the Kingdom, which said Khashoggi was killed in a fight at its Istanbul consulate.
“I do, I do,” Trump said when asked if he found the Saudis’ explanation credible, adding: “It’s early, we haven’t finished our review or investigation, but ... I think it’s a very important first step.”
“I would prefer, if there is going to be some form of sanction or what we may determine to do, if anything ... that we don’t use as retribution canceling $110 billion worth of work, which means 600,000 jobs,” he said during a visit to Arizona, referring to a major arms deal with the Kingdom.
Trump has sent mixed messages about Khashoggi for days, vowing a severe response but also saying that the United States wants to preserve its close relationship with the conservative Kingdom.
Members of the US Congress were far harsher in the wake of the Kingdom’s admission that Khashoggi was dead. The White House said on Friday it would press for justice over Khashoggi’s death.
“We will continue to closely follow the international investigations into this tragic incident and advocate for justice that is timely, transparent, and in accordance with all due process,” White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said in a statement.
“We are saddened to hear confirmation of Mr Khashoggi’s death, and we offer our deepest condolences to his family, fiancée, and friends,” she added.
But members of Congress voiced skepticism about the Saudi public prosecutor’s explanation that a fight broke out between Khashoggi and people who met him when he went to the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on Oct 2 and that the altercation led to his death.
Senator Lindsey Graham, a close Trump ally who has nonetheless been outspoken about Khashoggi’s death, doubted the credibility of the Saudi authorities, which insisted for weeks that he left the consulate.
“To say that I am skeptical of the new Saudi narrative about Mr Khashoggi is an understatement,” the Republican senator tweeted. Egypt, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on Saturday commended Saudi Arabia for the Gulf Kingdom’s preliminary investigation into the mysterious disappearance of Khashoggi.
The Saudi probe is a “testament to the country’s commitment to uncover the truth behind the incident and bring the perpetrators to justice,” read a statement by the Egyptian foreign ministry. It also heaped praise on Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz for the “decisive action” he has taken over the matter, proving his respect for the rule of law.
Bahrain has also assured its Gulf neighbor of its unbridled support amid Riyadh’s “transparent probe” into the case, saying that no one is above the law. Similarly, the UAE appreciated the Saudi monarch’s determination to get to the bottom of the unfortunate turn of events that led to the death of the Saudi journalist.
The Saudi king has expressed his “grave concern” over the situation, UAE Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan told state-run Emirates News Agency (WAM). Yemen on Saturday also praised decisions made by the Saudi king in relation to the death of Khashoggi, according to the Saudi-backed government’s state news agency.
Courtesy : Arab Times
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