‘Guilty until proven innocent’: Trump defends Saudi in disappearance of Khashoggi

MNA International Desk: Donald Trump has defended Saudi Arabia against mounting international condemnation of the disappearance of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, warning against a rush to judgment as his secretary of state, Mike Pompeo, headed to Turkey to meet President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.

The US president in an interview with the Associated Press, compared the case of Khashoggi – whom Turkish officials say was murdered in the Saudis’ Istanbul consulate – to allegations of sexual assault levelled against the supreme court justice Brett Kavanaugh during his confirmation hearing.

“I think we have to find out what happened first,” Trump said. “Here we go again with, you know, you’re guilty until proven innocent. I don’t like that. We just went through that with Justice Kavanaugh and he was innocent all the way as far as I’m concerned,” Trump said.

However, Erdoğan has made the international defence of Saudi Arabia harder by revealing that some areas at the Saudi consulate where Khashoggi was last seen alive had been repainted and that toxic materials had been found by police. Turkish sources allege the body was transported to the consul general’s house nearby and disposed of, reported news agency.


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