Leading conservative evangelicals met with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman yesterday, as questions regarding Saudi Arabia's involvement in the death of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi continue to pop up.
The crown prince also reportedly urged President Trump's advisers Jared Kushner and John Bolton in the call to preserve the alliance between the USA and Saudi Arabia.
An adviser to Erdogan said last week that MbS, as the crown prince is informally known, had "blood on his hands" over Khashoggi's killing, the bluntest comments yet from someone linked to Erdogan about Riyadh's de facto ruler in connection with the death.
Many Trump officials oppose the Muslim Brotherhood, the Post reported.
"The tragic and unjustified" slaying of Khashoggi "is the theme of today's onslaught and demonization of Saudi Arabia in the same fashion as the previous crises".
"Everybody is milking this", said Maha Yahya, director of the Carnegie Middle East Center in Beirut.
A senior Israeli official also told Channel 10, "What happened with Khashoggi's murder is very problematic, and that's an understatement".
But such ideas were quickly discarded as unrealistic, in part because no one would be willing to risk taking such a job, or to appear to counter Prince Mohammed while he retains full control of all the Saudi intelligence and security services as well as the aging king's ear.
It's a month to the day since Jamal Khashoggi walked into the Saudi consulate in Istanbul - and was never seen again.
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The U.S.is urging Saudi Arabia to locate Khashoggi's body and return it to his family as soon as possible.
In a statement to the newspaper, Khashoggi's family denied he had been a member of the Muslim Brotherhood and said the murdered writer had himself denied this repeatedly in recent years.
Turkish officials appear to have dismissed a theory that Jamal Khashoggi's body was given to a mystery local collaborator in Istanbul. "To claim otherwise would be ridiculous".
"But the Trump administration has taken a position that is devoid of moral foundation", she wrote Friday.
Khashoggi had entered the consulate to get papers he needed to marry his Turkish fiancee, Hatice Cengiz, who waited for him outside for hours before she alerted Turkish authorities.
Turkish officials kept up a steady stream of leaks about Khashoggi's killing for several weeks following his death, before the country's chief prosecutor announced on October 31 that the journalist had been strangled and dismembered.
"Though Riyadh has detained 18 suspects, it is deeply concerning that no action has been taken against the Saudi consul general, who lied through his teeth to the media and fled Turkey shortly afterwards".
She added, "It is now up to the global community to bring the perpetrators to justice".