Jamal Khashoggi: Trump 'concerned' about missing journalist; Saudis deny involvement

President Donald Trump said Monday that he was "concerned" about reports on the ...

Posted: Oct 9, 2018 1:02 PM
Updated: Oct 9, 2018 1:02 PM

President Donald Trump said Monday that he was "concerned" about reports on the disappearance of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, a Washington Post writer and Saudi royal court insider-turned-critic.

"I am concerned about that," Trump said. "I don't like hearing about it and hopefully that will sort itself out. Right now, nobody knows anything about it."

Continents and regions

Donald Trump

Middle East

Middle East and North Africa

Political Figures - US

Saudi Arabia

Embassies and consulates

Government and public administration

Government bodies and offices

Government departments and authorities

International relations

International relations and national security

Investigations

Istanbul

Jamal Khashoggi

Misc people

Political Figures - Intl

Recep Tayyip Erdogan

State departments and diplomatic services

Turkey

Business and industry sectors

Business, economy and trade

Freedom of press

Human rights

Journalism and news media

Media industry

"There's some pretty bad stories about it. I do not like it," he added.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo echoed his comments in a statement late Wednesday, saying there were "conflicting reports," but that the US was "concerned" by Khashoggi's disappearance.

"We call on the government of Saudi Arabia to support a thorough investigation of Mr. Khashoggi's disappearance and to be transparent about the results of that investigation," Pompeo said.

'Absolutely false'

Trump's comments coincided with a vehement denial from Saudi Arabia's ambassador to the US, Prince Khalid bin Salman bin Abdulaziz, who said claims that Khashoggi had been killed or detained by Saudi authorities were "absolutely false, and baseless," according to a statement obtained by CNN.

"There are many facts regarding his whereabouts that will hopefully be revealed through the ongoing investigation. Despite that, we have seen over the last few days various malicious leaks and grim rumors flying around about Jamal's whereabouts and fate," the statement says.

"I assure you that the reports that suggest that Jamal Khashoggi went missing in the Consulate in Istanbul or that the Kingdom's authorities have detained him or killed him are absolutely false, and baseless," it notes.

Vice President Mike Pence also weighed in on Khashoggi's disappearance, saying on Twitter, "Deeply troubled to hear reports about Saudi Arabian journalist Jamal Khashoggi. If true, this is a tragic day. Violence against journalists across the globe is a threat to freedom of the press & human rights. The free world deserves answers."

It was the first time Trump has weighed in on the situation involving Khashoggi, who was last seen entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul last Tuesday.

CNN on Tuesday obtained an image from a security camera of Khashoggi entering the building on October 2 at 1:14 p.m. local time.

Earlier on Monday, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Saudi Arabia should prove that Khashoggi has, in fact, left the Saudi consulate in Istanbul.

"He entered the general consulate himself, and if he has entered by himself and if he did not exit it, of course this should be proven by the general consulate," Erdogan said at a news conference in Budapest.

Erdogan said the Saudi consulate should have surveillance cameras and should be able to show the video of Khashoggi leaving the building. He mentioned that there are no documents or other evidence that show the journalist departing.

Turkish officials told The Washington Post and Reuters on Saturday that Khashoggi was killed inside the consulate. The officials have so far provided no evidence or details on how they arrived at this conclusion.

"I am following it up as the President of the Turkish Republic," Erdogan told reporters in Ankara on Sunday, while confirming that he had known Khashoggi for some time and considered him a friend.

The Justice Ministry and the chief prosecutor in Istanbul "started an investigation and efforts are continuing," Erdogan said. Airport entrances and exits are being investigated.

"At the moment there are certain people who arrived from Saudi Arabia. And our chief investigator is investigating everything in this matter."

No surveillance footage

Khashoggi, who left Saudia Arabia in 2017, entered the consulate last Tuesday to obtain documents for his upcoming marriage while his Turkish fiancée waited outside. She says she never saw him re-emerge.

A Saudi official said Khashoggi left the consulate shortly after he visited. The Saudis did not, however, release any surveillance footage or other evidence.

CNN reported Sunday that the US government is quietly working Khashoggi's case across several agencies and at senior levels of the administration.

Two senior administration officials said the administration has no verifiable information to confirm the Turkish government claims that Khashoggi was killed but that the US is seeking answers about his whereabouts -- and talking to senior levels of Saudi government.

In his statement to CNN, Saudi Arabia's ambassador to the US said Saudi investigators are working with Turkish authorities to determine what happened to Khashoggi.

"Jamal is a Saudi citizen whose safety and security is a top priority for the Kingdom, just as is the case with any other citizen. We will not spare any effort to locate him, just as we would if it were any other Saudi citizen," it said.

The incident has put into sharp focus Saudi Arabia's young Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman's perceived crackdown on dissidents, his kingdom's delicate relationship with Turkey and Khashoggi 's influence within the royal court.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 312608

Reported Deaths: 7221
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto21429257
Hinds20256414
Harrison17776308
Rankin13539278
Jackson13395246
Madison10051217
Lee9956173
Jones8364163
Forrest7633152
Lauderdale7215240
Lowndes6359144
Lamar620286
Lafayette6162118
Washington5320133
Bolivar4796132
Oktibbeha460398
Panola4545104
Pearl River4495145
Marshall4387103
Warren4368120
Pontotoc419372
Monroe4089133
Union408776
Neshoba4028176
Lincoln3939110
Hancock376686
Leflore3484125
Sunflower335290
Tate331684
Pike3290105
Scott314873
Alcorn310768
Yazoo310269
Itawamba299377
Copiah295865
Coahoma293979
Simpson293788
Tippah287268
Prentiss278560
Marion268680
Leake264973
Wayne262241
Grenada259985
Adams259882
Covington256281
Newton246961
George246748
Winston226981
Tishomingo225067
Jasper220748
Attala214273
Chickasaw207057
Holmes188672
Clay184654
Stone181433
Clarke178179
Tallahatchie177840
Calhoun169532
Yalobusha162936
Smith162034
Walthall133745
Greene130233
Lawrence128223
Noxubee126834
Montgomery126742
Perry126038
Amite123442
Carroll121628
Webster114532
Jefferson Davis106932
Tunica104626
Claiborne102130
Benton99025
Humphreys96133
Kemper95628
Franklin83323
Quitman79616
Choctaw75818
Wilkinson66830
Jefferson65428
Sharkey50217
Issaquena1686
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 528784

Reported Deaths: 10913
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson762251516
Mobile40864804
Madison34569501
Tuscaloosa25646451
Montgomery24264585
Shelby23355246
Baldwin20993306
Lee15800168
Calhoun14457312
Morgan14250279
Etowah13796352
Marshall12166222
Houston10506280
Elmore10017205
Limestone9935150
Cullman9617193
St. Clair9584237
Lauderdale9397238
DeKalb8813185
Talladega8183175
Walker7205279
Autauga6910107
Jackson6793110
Blount6621135
Colbert6282134
Coffee5491115
Dale4810111
Russell437938
Chilton4244111
Franklin423882
Covington4105117
Tallapoosa4004150
Escambia392675
Chambers3545123
Dallas3536150
Clarke350360
Marion3092100
Pike309177
Lawrence299698
Winston273572
Bibb259763
Marengo248564
Geneva247075
Pickens233559
Barbour230256
Hale221776
Butler215469
Fayette211962
Henry188544
Cherokee183845
Randolph179241
Monroe176240
Washington166839
Macon158649
Clay153356
Crenshaw151657
Cleburne148341
Lamar141234
Lowndes138453
Wilcox126528
Bullock122941
Conecuh110028
Perry107526
Coosa106828
Sumter104132
Greene92234
Choctaw60324
Out of AL00
Unassigned00
Tupelo
Clear
58° wxIcon
Hi: 74° Lo: 58°
Feels Like: 58°
Columbus
Clear
58° wxIcon
Hi: 74° Lo: 59°
Feels Like: 58°
Oxford
Clear
54° wxIcon
Hi: 71° Lo: 54°
Feels Like: 54°
Starkville
Clear
54° wxIcon
Hi: 73° Lo: 57°
Feels Like: 54°
A little bit of disturbed air moves through our area on Thursday evening. This could give us a few scattered showers. Beyond that small chance, things look good in the weather forecast through our Saturday.
WTVA Radar
WTVA Temperatures
WTVA Severe Weather