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Senators send rebuke to Saudis, Trump over Khashoggi killing

01 December 2018

The vote showed a significant number of Republicans were willing to break with Trump to express their deep dissatisfaction with Saudi Arabia and with the USA response to Khashoggi's brutal killing in Turkey last month.

In Buenos Aires, Freeland repeated that Canada is reviewing arms sales to Saudi Arabia in view of Khashoggi's murder, incredible explanations of his death offered by the kingdom so far (from denying he was dead to saying it was the fault of rogue Saudi agents), and Saudi participation in the civil war in neighbouring Yemen.

And Lindsey Graham, the South Carolina Republican who is often strongly allied with Trump, voted to move forward with the resolution and said he would insist on a briefing from Haspel.

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"There will be another opportunity next week to decide whether we proceed to it", Foreign Relations Committee chairman Bob Corker said. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., that would require the Director of National Intelligence within one month to issue an unclassified report into the individuals that participated in, ordered or "were otherwise complicit in" the death of Khashoggi.

Pompeo said US involvement in the Yemen conflict is central to the Trump administration's broader goal of containing Iranian influence in the Middle East. Earlier this month, USA officials revealed the Central Intelligence Agency believes the Crown Prince ordered Mr. Khashoggi's killing - contradicting Riyadh's claim that he was not involved in the murder. "We also have a crown prince that's out of control". "This is a normalization tour", she said.

Senator Bob Menendez of New Jersey, the top Democrat on the Foreign Relations Committee, said it was a "cover-up" not to have the Central Intelligence Agency director take part. "So we do need to confront them". Growing interest in showing the Saudis that, Khashoggi or no, the United States still supports them, has meant that Yemen is once again a low priority. Mr Corker said senators would have a chance to vote to proceed to the resolution next week as well as vote on amendments.

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Mr Trump has stood by the crown prince, saying he does not want to jeopardise U.S. business and defying intense pressure to impose broader sanctions on Saudi Arabia.

Specifically, the resolution "directs the President to remove U.S. Armed Forces from hostilities in or affectingYemen, except those engaged in operations directed at Al Qaeda, within 30 days unless: (1) the President requests and Congress authorizes a later date, or (2) a declaration of war or specific authorization for the use of the Armed Forces has been enacted".

Pompeo spoke to reporters after he and Defense Secretary Jim Mattis told the Senate behind closed doors that weakening US-Saudi ties over the killing would hurt national security.

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"On the contrary, Trump seems to have chose to consolidate that relationship, and that's why there had to be a reassessment in Ankara about how to manage this", he said.

Senators send rebuke to Saudis, Trump over Khashoggi killing