Trump talks to Saudi king, dispatches Pompeo

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       Manchester United could be worth more than £3bn but Sky Sports News understands the club is not for sale

3:17 Manchester United could be worth more than £3bn but Sky Sports News understands the club is not for sale

In an interview with 60 Minutes that aired on Sunday in the US, Mr Trump said if it turns out Saudi Arabia was behind Khashoggi's disappearance, "there will be severe punishment". I mean, who knows? Officials in Saudi Arabia did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Shortly after the cleaning crew entered the Saudi consulate, a team of investigators arrived in an unmarked police vehicle to begin an inspection of the building a full 13 days after Khashoggi entered to obtain marriage documents and never reemerged.

A Saudi delegation arrived in Turkey on Friday to discuss the case with Turkish authorities, following a Turkish presidential spokesperson's announcement that a joint Turkish-Saudi investigation team would be formed upon the kingdom's request.

Saudi Arabia calls the allegations "baseless" and says Khashoggi left the consulate on his own, although neither Turkey nor Saudi Arabia has provided clear evidence to support its version of events.

It was unclear on Tuesday when or if Saudi Arabia would go public with any new admissions in relation to Khashoggi's disappearance.

Saudi Arabia finally allowed Turkish officials to enter the Istanbul consulate on Monday evening.

Sen. Marco Rubio promised a "strong congressional response" against Saudi Arabia if the country is found to be responsible for the disappearance of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi.

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Trump despatched Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to the kingdom for what the State Department described as "face to face meetings with the Saudi leadership" to find out what happened. Senators from both political parties have called for sanctions against Saudis responsible for Khashoggi's disappearance.

The New York Times reported that the Saudi royal court would soon put out a narrative that an official within the kingdom's intelligence services - who happened to be a friend of Prince Mohammed - had carried out the killing.

If United's current owners were to sell the club, it would cost the Saudis more than £3bn - but there is a chance that the crown prince could instead just buy a portion.

"I do think the norms have eroded and the guardrails (have) come down under Donald Trump", said Colin Robertson, a former Canadian diplomat and foreign policy expert who serves as vice-president and fellow at the Calgary-based Canadian Global Affairs Institute.

Saudi Arabia has strongly denied any involvement in the reporter's disappearance and claimed Khashoggi left the consulate, but provided no evidence to back up their claims.

On Sunday, the oil-rich kingdom suggested retaliation if the US were to impose strict measures. Despite being anxious for his safety, he had gone into the consulate in Istanbul to get a document necessary to marry his Turkish fiancee, the partner and friends have said.

Worldwide business leaders have also been bailing en masse out of the kingdom's glittering big-ticket investment forum, the Future Investment Initiative, including the CEO of Uber, billionaire Richard Branson, JPMorgan Chase & Co.

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