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23rd Nov 2018

Donald Trump says ‘the world’ should be held to account for Jamal Khashoggi’s death

James Dawson

‘The world is a very vicious place’

Donald Trump has suggested that ‘the world’ should be blamed for the death of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, who was murdered at the Saudi Arabian consulate in Istanbul last month.

At a press conference after giving a Thanksgiving Day message to US troops deployed in Afghanistan, Trump was asked who should be held to account for Khashoggi’s assassination.

Trump responded: “Maybe the world should be held accountable because the world is a vicious place. The world is a very vicious place.”

He added: “You look at what’s happening in China, you look at what’s happening in so many different countries, I could name many countries. You look at what’s happening in terrorism all over the world.

“The other thing about Saudi Arabia, they’re putting up tremendous amounts of money to fight terrorism. Now, they were part of terrorism and nobody is going to try and justify that. They were a big part of it. But they’re spending a lot of money and they’re opening up and they’re doing a lot of things.”

The kingdom’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and his father King Salman have denied having any role in the assassination, claiming the murder was a “rogue operation” and that 11 people have been arrested following the incident. However, a CIA report released last week concluded that the prince had ordered the killing.

Despite this, Trump today made it clear that he intends to continue US backing of the Saudi regime, saying that the CIA never “concluded” Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman had ordered the assassination.

Trump said: “They have feelings certain ways. I have the report, they have not concluded, I don’t know if anyone’s going to be able to conclude the crown prince did it.

“But whether he did or whether he didn’t, he denies it vehemently. His father denies it, the king, vehemently.”

His comment comes after he previously described the country a “steadfast partner” that has agreed to invest “a record amount of money” in the US.