Corker: 'Everything' points to Saudi involvement in journalist's disappearance

Corker: 'Everything' points to Saudi involvement in journalist's disappearance
© Anna Moneymaker

Sen. Bob CorkerRobert (Bob) Phillips CorkerThe Hill's 12:30 Report – Cohen says Trump knew payments were wrong | GOP in turmoil over Trump shutdown threat | Kyl to resign from Senate at year's end The Hill's Morning Report — Trump maintains his innocence amid mounting controversies Overnight Defense: Senate bucks Trump with Yemen war vote, resolution calling crown prince 'responsible' for Khashoggi killing | House briefing on Saudi Arabia fails to move needle | Inhofe casts doubt on Space Force MORE (R-Tenn.) said Wednesday that “everything” indicates Saudi involvement in the disappearance of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Corker, the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said he reviewed U.S. intelligence on the issue Tuesday night and Wednesday morning.

Asked if that intelligence proves Turkey’s claims, Corker said, “Everything right now points to Saudi Arabia.”

“They’ve got a lot of explaining to do,” he added.

Corker also said he plans to reveal some sort of Senate action later Wednesday, but would not elaborate on what it is before its release.

Khashoggi, a Washington Post contributor who has been highly critical of Saudi Arabia’s rulers, has not been seen since last week, when he entered the Saudi consulate in Istanbul to get paperwork for his marriage to his Turkish fiancée.

Turkish officials have claimed Khashoggi was murdered inside the consulate and dismembered. The Saudis have called the allegations “baseless,” holding that he left the consulate alive the same day he arrived.

On Wednesday, President TrumpDonald John TrumpBiden, Sanders lead field in Iowa poll The Memo: Cohen fans flames around Trump Memo Comey used to brief Trump on dossier released: report MORE said he spoke with Saudi officials about Khashoggi and that the White House has been in touch with the fiancée, Hatice Cengiz, to arrange a visit.

"It's a very sad situation, it's a very bad situation," Trump told reporters during a briefing in the Oval Office on Hurricane Michael.

"We cannot let this happen — to reporters, to anybody," he added.

The top Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Sen. Bob MenendezRobert (Bob) MenendezMore oversight of America’s international media networks a good idea Pro-Israel organizations should finally seek payback against Iran deal Dems Trump lowers refugee goal to 30,000, he must meet it MORE (N.J.), said he is working with Corker on the Senate response.

He likewise would not elaborate ahead of its release, but pledged it will be “pretty powerful.”

“The Saudis have this entitlement air about them, and so I think they’re mistaken,” he said. “One thing is to be an ally, the other thing is to believe that an alliance means you have carte blanche. That’s not the case.”