Saudi leadership, Pompeo agree ‘thorough, transparent investigation’ into Khashoggi disappearance

1 / 8
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo met with King Salman in the Saudi capital on Tuesday. (SPA)
2 / 8
Pompeo met with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman at Riyadh’s royal palace. (SPA)
3 / 8
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo met with King Salman in the Saudi capital on Tuesday. (SPA)
4 / 8
Pompeo met with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman at Riyadh’s royal palace. (SPA)
5 / 8
The US chief diplomat was greeted at Riyadh airport by Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir and ambassador to Washington Prince Khalid bin Salman. (SPA)
6 / 8
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo met with King Salman in the Saudi capital on Tuesday. (SPA)
7 / 8
The US chief diplomat was greeted at Riyadh airport by Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir and ambassador to Washington Prince Khalid bin Salman. (SPA)
8 / 8
The US chief diplomat was greeted at Riyadh airport by Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir and ambassador to Washington Prince Khalid bin Salman. (SPA)
Updated 17 October 2018

Saudi leadership, Pompeo agree ‘thorough, transparent investigation’ into Khashoggi disappearance

  • Pompeo thanked King Salman for his commitment to a thorough, transparent investigation
  • The crown prince assured Pompeo that the US and Saudi Arabia are "old, strong allies"

RIYADH: US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo flew into Riyadh on Tuesday for talks with King Salman of Saudi Arabia and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman on the case of the missing Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Pompeo had a brief meeting with the king before a lengthy, 40-minute discussion with the crown prince. “We are strong and old allies. We face our challenges together,” the crown prince said as he warmly welcomed Pompeo to the Saudi capital. Later Prince Mohammed also discussed the investigation in a phone conversation with US President Donald Trump.

Saudi Minister of Foreign Affairs Adel Al-Jubeir also had talks with Pompeo. “The secretary and the foreign minister agreed on the importance of a thorough, transparent, and timely investigation,” State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said later.

Pompeo will travel to Turkey on Wednesday to meet Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu.

Khashoggi, a Saudi citizen who lived in the US, disappeared on Oct. 2 after visiting the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul to complete paperwork related to his divorce. Saudi Arabia and Turkey have set up a joint team to investigate the disappearance.

Officers from the team searched the consulate in Istanbul for eight hours overnight on Monday, and left at 5 a.m. on Tuesday.


Saudi Arabia confirms no change in Israel travel rules

Updated 27 January 2020

Saudi Arabia confirms no change in Israel travel rules

  • Foreign minister says Israeli passport holders are still unable to visit the the Kingdom

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia has confirmed that Israeli citizens are still unable to visit the Kingdom.

Foreign minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan said the policy has not changed despite Israel saying on Sunday that its passport holders could now travel to the country for religious and business visits.

“Our policy is fixed,” Prince Faisal told CNN. “We do not have relations with the state of Israel and Israeli passport holders cannot visit the Kingdom at the current time.”

His comments come as Donald Trump prepares to unveil his Middle East peace plan on Tuesday. An agreement between Israel and the Palestinians would be key to improving relations with Arab countries, most of which have no diplomatic ties with Israel.

“When a peace agreement is reached between the Palestinians and the Israelis, I believe the issue of Israel’s involvement in the region will be on the table,” Prince Faisal added.

Israel’s interior minister said on Sunday that Israelis - if invited and permitted by Saudi authorities - would be allowed to travel there for religious reasons on pilgrimage or for up to nine days for business reasons such as investment or meetings.

Israelis, mostly Muslims going on pilgrimage, do visit the Kingdom, but usually with special permission or using foreign passports.

Saudi Arabia, along with most Arab countries have no official diplomatic relations with Israel, and citizens of those countries are not able to travel to Israel nor Israelis to those countries.

However, relations between Israel and Gulf states have improved in recent years, particularly over a shared stand against Iran and its aggressive policies in the region.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said last month that he welcomed Israel’s warming ties to Arab countries in the region.

In 2018, Netanyahu visited Oman and met the late Sultan Qaboos bin Said.

*With Reuters