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United States senators trigger human rights probe over missing Saudi journalist

11 October 2018

Twenty-two senators wrote to Trump invoking the Global Magnitsky Human Rights Accountability Act, which requires the president to open an investigation and determine whether sanctions should be imposed.

Turkish sources have said they believe Khashoggi, a prominent critic of Saudi policies, was killed inside the mission. CCTV footage showed him entering the building.

Mr Trump told reporters he had talked to the Saudi authorities "at the highest level" about Mr Khashoggi.

On Monday, US President Donald Trump said he was "concerned" about the reports of Khashoggi's murder, following a much-derided period of silence from the White House. We are going to take a serious look at it.

'We were in the middle of making wedding plans, life plans, ' she added. "We don't know what happened yet".

Police and investigators in Turkey typically release video and information through state-run or otherwise government-friendly media outlets, as opposed to holding briefings like those common in Western nations.

Riyadh and Ankara have also differed on the subject of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt and on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, where Saudi Arabia has unofficially backed the so-called USA "deal of the century", whereas Turkey has condemned the Trump administration's attempt to "force a deal on the Palestinians". Republican Senator Lindsey Graham said it's "imperative" that the Saudi government give clear answers about what happened to Khashoggi.

"The Saudis have a lot of explaining to do because all indications are that they have been involved at minimum with his disappearance", Corker told The Associated Press.

Aksam newspaper also published blurred photos of a jet arriving in Istanbul before dawn on October 2, carrying what it said were nine members of the Saudi team, as well as images of some of them checking in at a hotel.

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A source told the Post that prior to Khashoggi going missing, US intelligence intercepted Saudi officials' communications, which revealed a plan to capture Khashoggi and get him to Saudi Arabia.

Pro-government Turkish newspaper Sabah yesterday published the names and photographs of 15 nationals who flew in on the day of his disappearance.

Corker said that he had warned the kingdom that its political support in the Senate is "the lowest ever" and that if Saudi officials are responsible for Kashoggi's disappearance, "this would drop it off a cliff".

Khashoggi was last seen entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 2 and is feared to be detained or dead.

Saudi Arabia denies involvement in Khashoggi's disappearance, and the Trump's administration's response has been far more cautious than that coming from Capitol Hill.

A Turkish security source had previously told Reuters that the 15 Saudis, including some officials, left the country later the same day.

Saudi Arabia asserts the allegations are "baseless".

"Two possibilities, either he was killed at the consulate and his body transported out on to the planes onward to Dubai/Cairo - then Riyadh, or he was abducted at the consulate and renditioned back to Saudi Arabia".

United States senators trigger human rights probe over missing Saudi journalist