President Donald Trump defended Saudi Arabia and parroted Saudi officials’ denials regarding the murder of Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi, who was last seen entering the Saudi embassy in Istanbul, Turkey.
The London Evening Standard notes that a Turkish security official said that a team of 15 Saudi agents brought a bone saw to the embassy to dismember Khashoggi.
The security official said that Turkey has identified the roles most of the 15 men held in the Saudi government or security services, one of whom was alleged to be an expert in post-mortem examinations.
Trump ignored reports and tried to push a conspiracy theory that “rogue killers” were responsible:
I just spoke with the king of Saudi Arabia, who denies any knowledge of what took place, with regard to, what he said, was his Saudi Arabian citizen.
Trump said he is sending Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to Saudi Arabia to investigate even though Pompeo has no authority in the foreign country:
I don’t want to get into [the king’s] mind, but it sounded to me like maybe these could have been rogue killers. Who knows?