The Latest: Rand Paul blames Saudi for writer killing
ISTANBUL (AP) — The Latest on the fallout from the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi at his country’s consulate in Istanbul (all times local):
A longtime U.S. critic of Saudi Arabia says he feels certain that Crown Prince Mohammed directed the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
Sen. Rand Paul told “Fox News Sunday” that the U.S. “cannot continue to have relations with him and so I think he’s going to have to be replaced.”
The Kentucky Republican said that there’s growing support in Congress to stop selling American arms to the Saudis, even though President Donald Trump says he doesn’t want to jeopardize U.S. defense company jobs.
Paul said that he doesn’t believe that “arms should ever be seen as a jobs program,” adding that the Saudis are using U.S. arms in the war in Yemen where civilians are being killed.
“I would cut off arms sales. It’s the only thing the Saudis will listen to,” said Paul. “I don’t think we need the Saudis. The Saudis need us much more than we need them.”
The chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee says Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman “crossed a line” in the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi and must pay a price.
Tennessee Republican Bob Corker says that based on his briefings he believes the royal known as MBS was behind the killing of the Saudi critic. He is being interviewed on CNN’s “State of the Union.”
Corker tells CNN’s “State of the Union” that the crown prince has “now crossed a line and there has to be a punishment and a price paid for that.”
Corker is also calling on Turkey, which has said it has tapes from Khashoggi’s killing inside the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul, to turn them over to the United States.
He says of the NATO ally: “The Turks have been talking more to the media than they have us.”
The European Union says the emerging details of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi’s death are “deeply troubling” and that a “continued thorough, credible and transparent investigation” is needed.
Saudi authorities have said Khashoggi died in a “brawl” with Saudi officials at the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul on Oct. 2, the latest in a series of conflicting explanations for his death. Turkish officials suspect a team of Saudi agents was sent to assassinate him.
Saudi Arabia said 18 Saudi suspects were in custody and intelligence officials had been fired. But critics believe the complex scheme that led to Khashoggi’s death could not have occurred without the knowledge of Mohammed bin Salman, the country’s powerful 33-year-old crown prince.
The EU said the continuing investigation should bring “proper clarity on the circumstances of the killing and ensuring full accountability of all those responsible for it.”
President Donald Trump says he needs to learn more about the killing of a Saudi journalist and will be working with Congress on the U.S. response.
Speaking late Saturday after a campaign rally in Nevada, he said he will be talking to Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman soon.
Saudi authorities announced that Jamal Khashoggi, a Washington Post columnist, died in the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul after a fistfight with officials there. That explanation has sparked allegations of a cover-up intended to shield the powerful crown prince.
Trump initially said he believed the Saudi account, but on Saturday he said he still does not know where Khashoggi’s body is.
Trump said: “We’d like to find out where it is and what happened… And I think we’re inching our way there.”