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Trump says it 'certainly looks' like journalist Khashoggi is dead

  • Published at 10:40 am October 19th, 2018
President Trump
US President Donald Trump Collected

Turkish sources have told Reuters the authorities have an audio recording indicating Khashoggi was killed

US President Donald Trump said on Thursday it “certainly looks” like US - based Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi is dead.

Khashoggi did not reappear from the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 2 where he went to collect documents for his planned marriage. Turkish officials have said they believe the journalist, a critic of Saudi rulers, was murdered inside the building and his body chopped up and removed.

“It certainly looks that way to me,” Trump told reporters at Joint Base Andrews when asked if Khashoggi was dead. “It’s very sad,” he added.

Trump said he was waiting for details from “about three different investigations so we can get to the bottom of” Khoshoggi’s disappearance.

Asked what the consequences would be if Saudi leaders were linked to his disappearance, Trump said: “Well, it’ll have to be very severe. I mean, it’s bad, bad stuff, but we’ll see what happens.”

Turkish sources have told Reuters the authorities have an audio recording indicating Khashoggi, a US resident who wrote columns for the Washington Post, was killed.

The Saudis have strongly denied the allegations but US media outlets have reported they will acknowledge he was killed in a botched interrogation. Trump has speculated without providing evidence that “rogue killers” could be responsible.