Published: Thu, December 06, 2018
Global Media | By Derrick Guzman

Top US senators briefed by Central Intelligence Agency blame Saudi prince for Khashoggi death

Top US senators briefed by Central Intelligence Agency blame Saudi prince for Khashoggi death

US actor and filmmaker Sean Penn and his crew on Wednesday did some shooting in front of the Saudi Arabian consulate in Istanbul reportedly for a documentary on the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi inside the mission. Lindsey Graham and Tennessee Sen. Graham has been a particularly harsh critic of the Trump administration's handling of the aftermath of Khashoggi's killing. "We'll do more damage to our standing in the world by ignoring MbS", Graham asserted, adding that he had "high confidence" the crown prince - whom he called "crazy" and a "wrecking ball" - was "complicit" in Khashoggi's murder.

"If the Saudi government is going to be in the hands of this man for a long time to come, I find it very hard to be able to do business, because I think he's insane, I think he is unsafe and he has put the relationship at risk".

"I have zero question in my mind that the crown prince directed the murder and was kept appraised of the situation all the way through it", Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Corker told reporters after Central Intelligence Agency director Gina Haspel briefed a small group of senators. Lindsey Graham, a South Carolina Republican who is directly involved in the effort.

He also said: "There's not a smoking gun, there's a smoking saw". "There's a smoking saw", Graham said, referring to reports from the Turkish government that said Saudi agents used a bone saw to dismember Khashoggi after he was killed in the Istanbul consulate, where he had gone to obtain paperwork enabling him to marry his fiancee.

That leaves us with the question if the Crown prince's days are numbered in his current position with opposition from USA lawmakers and dissents within his own Royal family.

Many Democrats want a "straight up or down vote" on a war powers resolution to end all US support for the Saudi coalition in Yemen, without amendments. Human rights groups say the war is wreaking havoc on the country and subjecting civilians to indiscriminate bombing.

US Senator Bob Corker, the current head of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, also said he is certain that MBS ordered Khashoggi's murder.

Corker said it would be "difficult" to come up with legislation that could pass the Senate.

President Trump has equivocated about assigning blame for Khashoggi's killing, frustrating lawmakers from both parties.

"I talked directly to the prince in Buenos Aires, telling him that we need better answers on what happened to Khashoggi and who is responsible for it", he said.
"Maybe he did and maybe he didn't!" He said he was working with colleagues on how to amend the resolution, and he had not had suggestions from the Trump administration on how it might prefer to proceed.

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