President Donald Trump called King Salman of Saudi Arabia to ask about missing journalist Jamal Khashoggi, according to a Monday morning tweet.
Just spoke to the King of Saudi Arabia who denies any knowledge of whatever may have happened “to our Saudi Arabian citizen.” He said that they are working closely with Turkey to find answer. I am immediately sending our Secretary of State to meet with King!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 15, 2018
The president also revealed that he is dispatching Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to Riyadh to continue to investigate the matter.
Turkish officials say Khashoggi, a columnist for The Washington Post, was spotted entering the Saudi consulate last week but was never observed coming out. Officials suspect that Saudi Arabia dispatched a team of 15 men to the consulate on that day and that Khashoggi may have been killed, dismembered and removed on site.
The Saudi government maintains that Khashoggi left the premises the same day he entered, but can offer no proof to the contrary.
Trump was asked about reports saying the Saudis killed Khashoggi in an interview with “60 minutes,” saying, “it’s being investigated. It’s being looked at very, very strongly. And we would be very upset and angry if that were the case.”
The president continued, “We’re going to get to the bottom of it, and there will be severe punishment.”