Published: Thu, December 13, 2018
Worldwide | By Myra Stephens

Senate Drive to Punish Saudi Prince Over Khashoggi Death Delayed

Senate Drive to Punish Saudi Prince Over Khashoggi Death Delayed

"It was bad enough that Republicans for the first time ever used a legislative maneuver to shut off the privilege of a Yemen resolution last month", McGovern said.

Trump told Reuters in an interview on Tuesday that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman "is very strong in power", and standing by the kingdom "certainly" meant standing by the crown prince at this moment.

On Sunday, Saudi Arabia's Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir ruled out sending them to Turkey for trial.

"From my point of view, the current construct is not working".

Trump again reiterated on Tuesday that the "crown prince vehemently denies" involvement in a killing that has sparked outrage around the world.

Khashoggi, a Washington Post columnist and US resident, was killed in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 2, provoking an political crisis in Saudi Arabia and tearing relations with the United States and other Western allies.

Corker said the most likely Senate response to the killing will be a non-binding resolution declaring the crown prince responsible for the murder, along with a war powers resolution under consideration in the chamber this week that would restrict USA support for a Saudi-led military campaign in Yemen.

"America has an important ally in the kingdom of Saudi Arabia", he said.

Some members of Saudi Arabia's ruling family are agitating to prevent MbS from becoming king, sources close to the royal court have told Reuters, and believe the United States and Mr Trump could play a key determining role in who ultimately assumes the position.

Riyadh eventually admitted he died in the consulate shortly after he entered, blaming his death on rogue agents - an explanation that has come under scrutiny as pressure builds in the US Congress for bin Salman, Saudi Arabia's de facto ruler, to be held to account for Khashoggi's death.

"I hope it's something that will be massively supported by the Senate". Corker said the new resolution would be similar, adding that he "has a high level of confidence" that the Saudi crown prince was complicit in the journalist's murder.

A United Nations report says that 13 million people face starvation as a result of the conflict and more than 10,000 have died. People who are responsible have to be held accountable.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said that the Senate could vote as soon as Wednesday on a resolution calling on the U.S.to pull assistance from the Saudi-led war in Yemen, a measure that gained momentum after Khashoggi's death. Bob Corker of Tennessee, who leads the foreign relations committee on which Gardner sits.

"We will find a way, a process, a procedure to make sure we get a vote". The bipartisan legislation set for next year is cosponsored by Menendez and Senator Todd Young, an Indiana Republican.

This is raising questions about at least some of these senators' obsession with Saudi Arabia and how that can prove to be counterproductive, according to United States experts.

"Saudi Arabia is our ally, but when your ally jumps into a pool of sharks, you are not obligated to follow".

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