Jamal Khashoggi: Trump to 'punish' Saudis over journalist


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Media captionCCTV footage shows missing Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul .

President Donald Trump has said the US will inflict “severe punishment” on Saudi Arabia if the kingdom is found to be responsible for the death of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

He said he would be “very upset and angry if that were the case”, but ruled out halting big military contracts.

Mr Khashoggi, a critic of the Saudi government, vanished on 2 October after visiting its consulate in Istanbul.

Saudi Arabia dismissed allegations that it ordered his killing as “lies”.

The interior minister said on Friday that the kingdom was keen to uncover “the whole truth”, stressing reports “about orders to kill” are “baseless”.

A Turkish security source has told the BBC that officials had audio and video evidence proving Mr Khashoggi, who writes for the Washington Post, was murdered inside the consulate.

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Media captionJamal Khashoggi: What we know about the journalist’s disappearance

In an interview with CBS News, Mr Trump said that, if true, the fact that a journalist was murdered was “terrible and disgusting”.

“We’re going to get to the bottom of it and there will be severe punishment,” he said.

However, he said that there were “other ways of punishing” than cancelling military contracts, which powers like Russia and China were interested in.

“I don’t want to hurt jobs, I don’t want to lose an order like that,” Mr Trump said.



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