While the CIA believes that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman ordered the brutal murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi last October, Saudi authorities continue to deny the allegations strongly. Now, Yahoo News reports that Prince Mohammed used a recent interview to warn against “exploiting” Khashoggi’s murder and ask for any “evidence” of the murder to be presented to Saudi courts.
“The death of Jamal Khashoggi is a very painful crime,” Prince Mohammed said in a Sunday interview with Asharq al-Awsat.
“Any party exploiting the case politically should stop doing so, and present evidence to the (Saudi) court, which will contribute in achieving justice,” he added in a statement, which many believe is a veiled attack on Turkey.
Saudi Arabia’s relationship with Turkey has been strained since Khashoggi’s murder. Although the prince claims to want peace with “all Islamic countries including Turkey,” Prince Mohammed’s alleged hit on Khashoggi while he was in Istanbul constitutes a rogue operation that suggests that peace with Turkey is not a high priority for the prince.
In the same interview, Prince Mohammed claimed that Iran is behind the attacks on two oil tankers traveling near the Strait of Hormuz, echoing the U.S.’s accusations. But ABC News reports that Prince Mohammed has failed to produce specific evidence of Iran’s guilt. The U.S. has also failed to provide valid evidence, although Secretary of State Mike Pompeo claims that there is “lots.”
As The Inquisitr previously reported, U.S. President Donald Trump is under fire from both Democrats and Republicans for his continuing arms deals with Saudi Arabia following Khashoggi ‘s murder. The president has reportedly approved of the transfer of nuclear technical expertise to the desert country twice since the assassination.
“President Trump’s eagerness to give the Saudis anything they want, over bipartisan congressional objection, harms American national security interests and is one of many steps the administration is taking that is fueling a dangerous escalation of tension in the region,” said Democratic Senator Tim Kaine.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi claims that she will do everything in her power to ensure that Trump’s recent arms sale to Saudi Arabia is blocked. She also said that the president’s continued support of Saudi Arabia is damaging to the U.S.’s long-term interests in the region.
“There will be a vote to remove any authority to make those sales to Saudi Arabia,” she said, adding that the issue is something that will continue to be fought with support from both Democrats and Republicans.