Donald Trump takes crude stance in Jamal Khashoggi murder case

Updated: Nov 22, 2018, 11:43 IST | Agencies | Washington

Defends decision to back Saudi rulers saying maintaining ties with Riyadh and keeping global oil prices down is in the best interests of the world

Demonstrators dressed as Saudi Arabian Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and US President Donald Trump (C) protest outside the White House. Pic/AFP
Demonstrators dressed as Saudi Arabian Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and US President Donald Trump (C) protest outside the White House. Pic/AFP

President Donald Trump has defended his decision not to hold Saudi rulers accountable in the brutal killing of dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi, saying maintaining strategic ties with Riyadh and keeping the global oil prices down were in the best interests of the US and the world, a stand criticised as a "betrayal of American values."

Trump essentially argued that although the murder of Khashoggi was "terrible" and could not be condoned, it did not merit the disruption of a strategic relationship he has elevated to extraordinary levels. "We're not going to give up hundreds of millions of dollars in orders and let Russia and China have them ... it's a very simple equation for me. I'm about make America great again," said Trump.

Trump said his decision was all about America first."Saudi Arabia, if we broke with them, I think your oil prices would go through the roof. I've kept them down. They've helped me keep them down. ...But I think that it's a very simple equation for me. I'm about making America great again and I'm about America first," Trump argued.

Iranian FM mocks Trump
Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has issued a mocking response to President Donald Trump's announcement. "Mr Trump bizarrely devotes the FIRST paragraph...to accuse IRAN of every sort of malfeasance he can think of," Zarif tweetd. "Perhaps we're also responsible for the California fires, because we didn't help rake the forests," Zarif added.

'No classified info in her e-mails'
US President Donald Trump has defended his daughter Ivanka Trump who is being criticised for using her private e-mail for official purposes in a possible violation of federal record-keeping laws, saying the mails did not contain classified information and have not been deleted. "They weren't deleted like Hillary Clinton — she wasn't hiding...Everything is there."

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