US President Donald Trump’s latest comments about the killing of Khashoggi show that he will “turn a blind eye” to the issue regardless of what investigators uncover, Turkey’s Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu has said.
Trump has vowed to retain Saudi Arabia as a “steadfast partner” despite saying that the kingdom’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman may have known about the plan to murder the journalist.
Criticising Trump for prioritising commercial relations than justice, Cavusoglu said that human life should take precedence.
“This statement that Trump made also means: ‘No matter what happens, I will turn a blind eye.’ This is not a correct approach. Not everything is money,” Cavusoglu told broadcaster CNN Turk on Friday.
The foreign minister also commented on recent moves by European partners in relation to the case.
On Monday, Germany said it would bar 18 Saudis from entering its territory and Europe’s Schengen passport-free zone over their alleged links to the murder.
In October, Germany called for EU countries to follow its lead and suspend arms sales to Saudi Arabia, prompting a dismissive response from France, the kingdom’s second-biggest customer after India.
But Denmark on Thursday followed suit, freezing all sales of weapons and military equipment to Riyadh.
Cavusoglu said “artificial measures” would not help solve the crisis.
“They (Europe) say they don’t want to upset ties with Saudi Arabia. We do not want to upset our relations either,” he said, but added Ankara would do anything to shed light on the murder.
Saudi Arabia has admitted Jamal Khashoggi was killed inside its consulate in the Turkish city of Istanbul. Khashoggi – a Saudi writer, United States resident and The Washington Post columnist – had entered the building on October 2 to obtain documentation certifying he had divorced his ex-wife so he could remarry. After weeks of repeated denials that it had anything to do with his disappearance, the kingdom eventually acknowledged that its officials were behind the gruesome murder. The whereabouts of his body are still unknown.