Saudis: Prince had no role in slaying

Saudis: Prince had no role in slaying

The European Union reiterated calls for a detailed and reliable investigation into Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi's murder in the kingdom's Istanbul consulate.

The Saudi minister urged Congress to wait for the investigation and the trial to be over in Saudi Arabia, instead of "putting the cart before the horse". Trump has not yet responded to the request, and-according to an official who spoke to Bloomberg-he doesn't have to.

The journalist was killed by Saudi operatives inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 2, 2018.

Mr Jubeir said he would not comment on stories without named attribution after the New York Times reported that Prince Mohammed threatened to use "a bullet" on Mr Khashoggi.

The conversation was intercepted by United States intelligence agencies, as part of routine efforts by the National Security Agency and other agencies to capture and store the communications of global leaders, including allied ones, The Times said.

In the audio, the Crown Prince allegedly said he wanted Khashoggi to return to the kingdom, and complained his work was hurting the leader's image as a reformer. India and Israel have not yet been able to find a mutually convenient date for Netanyahu's visit even though the government remains keen to host him.

But Saudi officials insist he was murdered by a "rogue" team of Saudi agents not acting on Prince Mohammed's orders. Jubeir explained that the case is handled by the judiciary, where the first session of the trial of 11 people was held at the beginning of this year, adding that the second trial was open to the public and humanitarian organizations.

Turkey, which is carrying out its own investigation into Khashoggi's murder, has been frustrated by what Ankara says is a lack of cooperation by Riyadh.

Speaking at the launch of a book about the journalist, Hatice Cengiz also said she believes that Saudi King Salman "has a conscience" and will support Turkey's efforts to shed light on his killing.

Agnes Callamard, an independent United Nations human rights expert, has criticized the kingdom for its lack of transparency in the proceedings over the grisly slaying.

Saudi Arabia has refused to extradite its citizens to Turkey after the country issued arrest warrants for several Saudi officials.

Congressional leaders triggered the Magnitsky Act in October, giving the administration 120 days, until February 8, to report back on who was responsible for the death of Khashoggi, a USA resident killed at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, Turkey, and whether it would impose sanctions on that person or persons. He said that the killing had been a "huge mistake". USA lawmakers are clamoring for a strong response to Khashoggi's murder despite President Trump's lackluster response to the case.

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