WASHINGTON *VOA News) — President Donald Trump said Tuesday the U.S. is standing by Saudi Arabia even though the president acknowledged Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman may have known about a Saudi operation last month to kill dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi inside Riyadh’s consulate in Istanbul.
“It could very well be that the Crown Prince had knowledge of this tragic event – maybe he did and maybe he didn’t!” Trump said in a statement, adding that “we may never know all of the facts surrounding the murder.”
But the U.S. leader said, “In any case, our relationship is with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. They have been a great ally in our very important fight against Iran. The United States intends to remain a steadfast partner of Saudi Arabia to ensure the interests of our country.”
Multiple U.S. news agencies have cited U.S. intelligence officials saying the Central Intelligence Agency has concluded that the crown prince, the de facto Saudi leader, ordered the October 2 killing. Saudi officials deny this.