Gerard Butler: Saudi press tour would have 'felt incredibly insensitive'

Gerard Butler said Monday he’s canceled a press tour to Saudi Arabia for his upcoming movie, as it felt “incredibly insensitive” in the wake of the disappearance of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

“When I woke up in the morning before we were supposed to go to Saudi Arabia we were informed of what was happening and it just didn’t feel like a good time to be getting involved with that. It felt incredibly insensitive to go to Saudi Arabia,” Butler told reporters at the Pentagon.


“It just didn’t seem like a situation that we would want to get into,” said the actor, who was at the Defense Department to speak about his experience in making the new Navy submarine attack movie “Hunter Killer.”

Butler first told CNN on Saturday that he canceled the Saudi press tour. He was originally scheduled to attend a screening in the capital of Riyadh.

He said at the Pentagon that on the trip he had been scheduled to meet with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

“We were going to be going to Saudi Arabia and meeting certain people that have been implicated in this, so you can imagine it just didn’t feel like a trip we should be making,” he said.

Khashoggi, who wrote for The Washington Post and resided in Virginia, has been missing since he visited the Saudi consulate in Turkey on Oct. 2. He was there to get paperwork necessary for his marriage.

Turkish officials have said they believe Khashoggi was killed and dismembered inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on orders of the government in Riyadh.

The incident has sparked a major diplomatic crisis between the U.S. and Saudi Arabia.

President TrumpDonald TrumpGaetz was denied meeting with Trump: CNN Federal Reserve chair: Economy would have been 'so much worse' without COVID-19 relief bills Police in California city declare unlawful assembly amid 'white lives matter' protest MORE has previously threatened to impose penalties on Riyadh if it is found to have been responsible for Khashoggi's disappearance, but he suggested on Monday that Saudi Arabia might not be responsible and that "rogue killers" may have gotten to the journalist.