Pompeo to meet with Saudi king amid Khashoggi probes: Donald Trump

A protest at the Embassy of Saudi Arabia about the disappearance of journalist Jamal Khashoggi

A protest at the Embassy of Saudi Arabia about the disappearance of journalist Jamal Khashoggi

Saudi Arabia is now at the center of an worldwide controversy over the suspected death of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, a Saudi-born USA permanent resident who disappeared on October 2 after visiting the Saudi consulate in Turkey.

Trump says he's dispatching Secretary of State Mike Pompeo (pahm-PAY'-oh) to meet with the king of Saudi Arabia to try to find out what happened to missing journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

One source says the report will likely conclude that the operation was carried out without clearance and transparency and that those involved will be held responsible.

Following a call with Saudi King Salman ー who vehemently denied any involvement in Khashoggi's suspected abduction ー Trump suggested to reporters on Monday that the kingdom may not be culpable.

Speaking in Toronto Monday, Trudeau said Canada will not be silenced by human rights abusers like Saudi Arabia and its leader, Mohammad Bin Salman - the young crown prince who has sought to modernize his deeply religious country but has bristled at criticism from overseas.

"And incidentally in this whole case of Khashoggi, [Turkish President Recep] Erdogan doesn't come into this case with what we used to say 'clean hands.' He has a bad human rights record".

It is not the first time that King Salman has sought to ease tensions surrounding the 33-year-old Prince Mohammed, who has been cultivated by the U.S. but whose reformist credentials are being quickly shredded by the mystery surrounding Khashoggi's fate.

Last week, an anonymous Turkish official alleged that 15 Saudi operatives had flown into the country, bringing with them a doctor and a bone saw with which to dismember Khashoggi's body and smuggle it out of the consulate building.

On Sunday, JP Morgan Chase & Co Chief Executive Jamie Dimon became the latest high-profile participant to cancel plans to attend the FII, following the disappearance of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

"There's something really bad and disgusting about that, if that was the case, so we're going to have to see", Trump said.

He told CBS: "We're going to get to the bottom of it".

Saudi Arabia has strongly denied killing Khashoggi and has denounced such assertions as "lies", saying he left the building shortly after entering. Benchmark Brent crude is trading at around $80 a barrel, and Trump has criticized OPEC and Saudi Arabia over rising prices. Saudi Arabia has denied the claims.

"The kingdom affirms its total rejection of any threats and attempts to undermine it, whether by threatening to impose economic sanctions, using political pressures or repeating false accusations", the statement said.

Meanwhile, more major players in worldwide finance and industry are pulling out of a high-profile business conference in Saudi Arabia. Ford Motor Executive Chairman Bill Ford won't attend because of a scheduling conflict, a spokeswoman said.

Khashoggi's fate has troubled Washington and Saudi Arabia's other traditional Western allies.

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