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Pompeo Urges Saudi Govt to Support a Thorough Probe Into Khashoggi Disappearance

MOSCOW (Sputnik) – The United States urged Saudi Arabia to ensure that a thorough investigation is conducted into the vanishing of a prominent Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, US State Secretary Mike Pompeo said in a statement on Monday.

"State Department senior officials have spoken with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia through diplomatic channels about this matter … We call on the government of Saudi Arabia to support a thorough investigation of Mr. Khashoggi's disappearance and to be transparent about the results of that investigation," the statement reads.

View of Istanbul with the Bosporus and the Bosporus Bridge in Turkey. (File) - Sputnik International
We Must Be Careful Whether to Say Saudi Journalist 'Is Alive or Not' - Scholar
Turkish media reported last week that Jamal Khashoggi went missing on Wednesday, last seen entering the Saudi consulate. In particular, the Anadolu news agency cited Khashoggi’s fiancee saying he had been invited to the mission to get documents required for their wedding. After waiting for five hours outside the consulate she was told he had already left.

According to the Saudi Press Agency, citing the country's Consulate General, the journalist disappeared after he left the diplomatic mission's compound. The Saudi Consulate General also stated that it was cooperating with Turkish authorities to determine the circumstances surrounding the journalist's disappearance.

READ MORE: Erdogan Demands Riyadh Prove Missing Journalist Left Istanbul Consulate

Meanwhile, US President Donald Trump said Monday he was also troubled by reports about the Saudi journalist's unclear fate.

"I am concerned about it. I don't like hearing about it. And hopefully that will sort itself out. Right now nobody knows anything about it, but there are some pretty bad stories going around. I do not like it," Trump was quoted saying by Reuters at the White House on Monday.

Jamal Khashoggi - Sputnik International
Kingdom Critic: Prominent Saudi Journalist Jamal Khashoggi Disappears in Turkey
The Washington Post said Saturday, citing sources familiar with the inquiry, that its columnist, Jamal Khashoggi, had been killed by a 15-man Saudi assassination team that was sent to Turkey "specifically for the murder." The Washington Post offered no specific evidence to support their claim.

However, a Saudi source at the Istanbul consulate denied that had been killed at the mission, and said that the accusations were wrong. The Saudi consulate also denied that Khashoggi was abducted, Reuters reported.

Khashoggi reportedly left Saudi Arabia last year, claiming that he feared retribution for his criticism of Saudi policy in the Yemen war and the kingdom's crackdown on dissent.

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