“There’s no doubt in my mind that the crown prince knew what was going on in Turkey and was very much involved in that,” Cardin told “Fox News Sunday,” referencing the murder of Khashoggi inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul in early October.
“We cannot allow that type of conduct to go unchallenged,” he said. “The United States needs to have a pretty strong position on it and we have to demand that there be accountability.”
“That does not mean that we can’t continue to have a strategic relationship with Saudi Arabia,” he said, but added that the U.S. is in the stronger position in the relationship. “They need America.”
U.S. lawmakers have struggled to balance the two countries’ strategic partnership with punishing those involved in Khashoggi’s death. A number of Democrats have suggested slashing ties with Saudi Arabia entirely. The Senate, with Republican support, last week advanced a resolution to end U.S. military support for the Saudi-led campaign in Yemen’s civil war, even though the White House scrambled to halt the bill.
In statements two weeks ago about Khashoggi’s death, Trump focused on what Saudi Arabia does for the U.S. as a strategic partner and how their relationship with the U.S. fits into a larger geopolitical picture.
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