President Donald Trump on Monday seemed to indicate that he’s buying the Saudi government’s blanket denial of being responsible for the disappearance of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
On Monday, the president tweeted that he “just spoke to the King of Saudi Arabia” and said that the king “denies any knowledge of whatever may have happened ‘to our Saudi Arabian citizen.'”
Just spoke to the King of Saudi Arabia who denies any knowledge of whatever may have happened “to our Saudi Arabian citizen.” He said that they are working closely with Turkey to find answer. I am immediately sending our Secretary of State to meet with King!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 15, 2018
Speaking with reporters on the White House lawn, Trump once again emphasized that the Saudi government “firmly denies” that it had anything to do with Khashoggi’s disappearance, and he suggested that there was another culprit to blame.
“It sounds to me like maybe these could have been rogue killers,” the president said.
Trump then said that the Saudi government’s denial “could not have been stronger.”
Jamal Khashoggi, who frequently wrote articles critical of the Saudi government, has been missing ever since he entered Saudi Arabia’s consulate in Istanbul, Turkey last week. Several leaks from intelligence agencies have claimed that he was killed by Saudi operatives and then dismembered and removed from the building in pieces.
Speaking outside White House, Trump again goes out of his way to mention Khashoggi's immigration status
"I just spoke w/king of Saudi Arabia, who denies any knowledge of what took place with regard to, as he said, his Saudi Arabia citizen…these might have been rogue killers" pic.twitter.com/nAoCs7RCV7
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) October 15, 2018