“Those Responsible Will Be Punished”: Pence Vows Response To “Brutal” Khashoggi Murder

Tuesday, October 23, 2018
By Paul Martin

by Tyler Durden
Tue, 10/23/2018

Vice President Mike Pence on Tuesday reiterated comments he made last week, vowing that the United States would “follow the facts” and “demand that those responsible are held accountable,” for the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi – calling it an “assault on a free and independent press,” reports The Hill.

Pence said CIA Director Gina Haspel is in Turkey “reviewing the evidence” in the case and will brief President Trump upon returning to the U.S., after which the president would decide on a response.

“We’re going to follow the facts. We’re going to demand that those responsible are held accountable,” Pence said at an event sponsored by The Washington Post, where Khashoggi was a contributing columnist. -The Hill

Pence added that a fiery speech on Tuesday from Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan accusing the Saudis of orchestrating Khashoggi’s murder only “underscores the determination of oru administration to find out what happened here.”

“The word from President Erdogan this morning that this brutal murder was premeditated — preplanned days in advance — flies in the face of earlier assertions that had been made by the Saudi regime,” Pence said.

Pence’s comments highlight the intense pressure facing Saudi Arabia to be more forthcoming about Khashoggi’s death and on Trump to unequivocally reject the Saudi account.

Trump thus far has sent mixed messages about whether he accepts the Saudi version of events and whether he will punish Riyadh in response.

Pence refused to say what measures the U.S. might take to respond to Saudi Arabia, but said the decision would be “based upon the values of the American people and our vital national interests.” -The Hill

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