US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Sunday has said that there is no direct evidence that links Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi murder, news agency ANI reported. He said he has seen all the intelligence inputs relating to the incident. Earlier, Pompeo had said that the US will hold accountable all involved in the killing of a dissident Saudi journalist.
"I have read every piece of intelligence that is in the possession of United States government," Pompeo said in an interview with broadcaster CNN in Buenos Aires on the sidelines of the G20 summit.
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"When it is done, when you complete that analysis, there's no direct evidence linking him to the murder of Jamal Khashoggi. That is an accurate statement, an important statement and it is a statement that we are making publicly today," he said.
Earlier, Saudi Arabia said that the prince had no prior knowledge of the murder.
The brutal murder of the journalist sparked a foreign policy crisis in the US with President Donald Trump calling the murder “worst cover-up in history”. He, however, shied away from directly blaming the prince.
Khashoggi, a columnist for the Washington Post, was critical of Prince Mohammed and the country’s intervention in Yemen. Prince Mohammed has overseen Saudi Arabia’s Yemen war effort, a highly controversial intervention to bolster President Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi’s government in the face of an insurgency by Huthi rebels.
Nearly 10,000 people have since been killed and the country now stands at the brink of famine.
Jamal Khashoggi, a US resident, was murdered in Saudi Arabia’s consulate in Istanbul on October 2 and the crown prince has been accused of orchestrating the killing, which has strained the decades-old alliance between Washington and Riyadh.