MOSCOW, October 26. /TASS/. Kremlin sees no grounds to question the Saudi Royal Family’s statements on its non-involvement in the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, Russian Presidential Spokesman Dmitry Peskov has said.
He dismissed as inappropriate reporters’ question whether the Kremlin believed the Saudi Royal Family was not involved in the journalist’s murder.
"There is the king’s official statement, there is the crown prince’s official statement. Actually, no one should have any grounds not to believe (them)," the Kremlin spokesman stressed.
According to Peskov, the Kremlin welcomes Riyadh’s determination to thoroughly investigate Khashoggi’s murder. "Russia’s stance has been outlined by [President Vladimir] Putin. We heard the Royal Family’s statements condemning this murder, stressing that the Royal Family was not involved in that. All the rest is a matter of investigation, and the Royal Family itself wants that too. We welcome that," he stressed.
The Kremlin press service earlier reported that the issue had been raised in a phone call between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud on Thursday. According to the Saudi Press Agency, the Saudi king briefed the Russian leader on steps to disclose all facts and circumstances of the murder. He also informed Putin about steps taken by Riyadh aimed at bringing those responsible to justice.
Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, known for his criticism of Saudi Arabia's current policy, left his home country and moved to the United States in 2017. The journalist wrote articles for The Washington Post, analyzing the situation in Saudi Arabia and the country's foreign policy, and criticizing Riyadh.
The journalist arrived in the consulate general of Saudi Arabia in Istanbul on October 2 to complete paperwork to marry a Turkish citizen and has not been in contact since then. On October 20, Saudi authorities announced that the journalist had been killed while visiting the consulate. Saudi Arabia's Public Prosecutor Saud Al-Moajab declared that 18 Saudi nationals were under investigation, without disclosing their names. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that Khashoggi’s murder had been thoroughly planned.