File photo of Jared Kushner with Saudi crown prince & Ivanka Trump
File photo of Jared Kushner with Saudi crown prince & Ivanka Trump

USA in "fact-finding stage": Kushner on Khashoggi

ANI | Updated: Oct 22, 2018 23:39 IST

New York [USA], Oct 22 (ANI): Senior advisor to Donald Trump, Jared Kushner has said that the Trump administration is still in the "fact-finding phase" regarding journalist Jamal Khashoggi's death.
"Right now as an administration we're more in the fact finding phase," Kushner told CNN at a conference held here on Monday (local time).
The advisor, who is also US President Donald Trump's son-in-law, said, "We're getting as many facts as we can, then we'll determine which facts are credible."
He further outlined that it is imperative to maintain the US-Saudi relationship. "We have to be able to work with our allies and Saudi Arabia has I think been a very strong ally in terms of pushing back on Iran's aggression," he added.
Kushner also stated that the USA was dealing with Saudi Arabia's explanation behind the scribe's death with "their eyes wide open".
"I think the president is focused on what's good for America-what are our strategic interests, where do we share interests with other countries, let's work toward those," stated the advisor at the conference.
"We have to be able to pursue our strategic objectives. But we also have to deal with what is obviously a terrible situation," Kushner said while adding that he had advised the Saudi crown prince Mohammed bin Salman to maintain transparency during the investigations into Khashoggi's death.
Kushner also praised Saudi reforms, while stating that they helped in advancing American interests. "A lot of the reforms they've been making there to help us track down the terror financing and also to push back against the people who are perverting the religion, have been very historic over the last year. So we're hopeful we can keep pushing forward with a lot of the initiatives that further American interests and that push back Iran's aggression, so we're going to stay focused on that," he said.
At least 18 people have been detained and several officials have been fired in relation to Khashoggi's killing by Saudi authorities.
The Saudi royal family had also called up deceased journalist Khashoggi's son, Salah Khashoggi, to extend their condolences on Monday.
The journalist went missing on October 2 after cameras captured him walking into the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, Turkey before being declared dead by Saudi Arabia.
Saudi Arabia's Attorney General confirmed that preliminary investigations indicated that the journalist died inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul after a brawl within the premises. (ANI)