Top U.S. diplomat in Saudi Arabia for talks over missing journalist

Top U.S. diplomat in Saudi Arabia for talks over missing journalist

Since the controversy over Saudi Arabia's involvement in the disappearance of Khashoggi, who hasn't been seen since he entered the Saudi consulate in Turkey on October 2, a number of top executives, companies and news outlets have dropped out of the summit, an event meant to highlight investment in the country.

Khashoggi, a USA resident, Washington Post columnist and leading critic of Prince Mohammed, vanished after entering the consulate to get marriage documents.

CNN reported Monday that Saudi Arabia is preparing a report that would admit Mr. Khashoggi was killed as the result of an interrogation that went wrong. Sources tell Fox News that President Trump has not been made aware of any pending report by the Saudi government.

"One source says the report will likely conclude that the operation was carried out without clearance and transparency and that those involved will be held responsible", CNN added.

The Washington Times said Trump, just hours earlier, had reported talking with the Saudi king, who, he said, denied his government's involvement.

"The Kingdom affirms its total rejection of any threats and attempts to undermine it, whether by threatening to impose economic sanctions, using political pressures, or repeating false accusations." the official Saudi Press Agency quoted an unnamed government source as saying.

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The comments came after US President Donald Trump threatened "severe punishment" for Riyadh if it turned out Khashoggi, a prominent critic of Saudi authorities and a legal resident of the United States, was killed in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul.

President Trump tweeted Monday morning that he had spoken by phone with King Salman of Saudi Arabia and that the king "denies any knowledge of whatever may have happened" to Khashoggi.

Khashoggi vanished after entering a Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 2, igniting a global firestorm over the circumstances of his disappearance.

Forensics tests like spraying luminol, a chemical mixture, can expose blood left behind, said Mechthild Prinz, an associate professor at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice who previously worked at the New York City's Office of the Chief Medical Examiner.

Japanese SoftBank's shares also took a dive on Monday, falling by almost seven percent over fears for its major financial ties with Saudi Arabia.

Turkish officials have accused Saudi Arabia of sending in a 15-man team to interrogate, kill, and dismember Khashoggi's body with a bone saw before flying it back to his native country.

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In Istanbul, meanwhile, investigators entered the consulate for their own investigation.

Appearing on the progressive SiriusXM daily talk show Signal Boost, the House Speaker questioned why Trump's first major overseas trip as president was a visit to Saudi Arabia.

We have seen Saudi Arabia killing Naser al-Sa'id in 1979 in Lebanon - he was kidnapped, taken back to Saudi Arabia and was killed.

King Salman has replaced two crown princes in the past.

A string of high-profile finance executives followed technology and media leaders in pulling out of a Saudi investment conference scheduled for late this month, potentially risking a lucrative role in the kingdom's plans for a historic opening of its economy.

The Stephen Harper government brokered a massive combat-vehicle sale to Saudi Arabia before the Trudeau government took power in 2015.

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Until Monday, Riyadh had not allowed Turkish investigators to search the consulate - officially Saudi territory - with reports both sides were at odds over the conditions.

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