Published: Wed, December 05, 2018
Global Media | By Derrick Guzman

Khashoggi murder: Central Intelligence Agency chief Haspel 'to brief Congress'

Khashoggi murder: Central Intelligence Agency chief Haspel 'to brief Congress'

The crown prince is "crazy" and "a wrecking ball" who is "complicit in the murder of Mr Khashoggi to the highest level possible", Graham said in withering criticism of an American ally.

It said the 81-year-old president, whose health has been fragile since he suffered a stroke in 2013 and is rarely seen in public, was "in bed with a heavy flu". Mattis said there was no "smoking gun" implicating the Saudi crown prince.

While Saudi Arabia and the crown prince "are two different entities", Graham said the relationship between Washington and Riyahd was imperiled due to MBS's control of the Saudi government. Still, that didn't stop Rep. Chris Stewart (R-Utah) from defending President Donald Trump's apparent unwillingness to hold Mohammed responsible. Saudi Arabia, for its part, had initially denied any involvement in Khashoggi's disappearance but claimed via state media in October that Khashoggi had been strangled in a fistfight with 15 men sent to confront him at the Saudi consulate in Turkey.

A U.S. senator has attacked Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman - describing him as insane, dangerous, a wrecking ball, and "complicit in the murder" of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Sen. Bob Corker says a jury would find the Saudi crown prince 'in about 30 minutes.'
Sen. Bob Corker says a jury would find the Saudi crown prince 'in about 30 minutes.'

Sen. Bob Corker, a Tennessee Republican who chairs the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, told CNN after a briefing with Haspel that the prince, known as MBS, "ordered, monitored, the killing" of the father of four.

Pompeo and Mattis tried to dissuade senators from punishing Saudi Arabia with the resolution, saying US involvement in the Yemen conflict is central to the Trump administration's broader goal of containing Iranian influence in the Middle East.

Many Democrats want a "straight up or down vote" on a war powers resolution to end all USA support for the Saudi coalition in Yemen, without amendments.

Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., who demanded the briefing with Haspel, said there is "zero chance" the crown prince wasn't involved in Khashoggi's death.

He went on to suggest that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Defense Secretary James Mattis were being "technical" "good soldiers" for the goals of the Trump administration.

He argued that Pompeo and Mattis needed to be asked specifically if they disagreed with the CIA's conclusion there was "no smoking gun" to link the crown prince to the murder, as Mattis has claimed.

Haspel's absence at a closed-door briefing on Saudi Arabia last week rankled key lawmakers.

Senate responds to Trump's support of Saudi Arabia with a bill that would pull US support from Saudi-led forces fighting in Yemen; Lt. Col.

Senators are "trying to figure out an amendment that a larger group of people could get behind that addresses this issue without undermining our national interests", Corker said.

"And yet we have to have a relationship with these individuals or with these countries".

The case has highlighted growing tensions between the Trump administration and the Central Intelligence Agency, which concluded last month that MBS ordered Khashoggi's murder. The Senate ultimately passed that measure by a very wide margin, and debate on the resolution itself is expected to begin soon.

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