Schiff plans to probe intel assessment of Khashoggi killing

Schiff plans to probe intel assessment of Khashoggi killing
© Greg Nash

The Democrat set to chair the House Intelligence Committee in the next Congress says lawmakers will investigate the intelligence community's assessment of the death of Jamal Khashoggi, a Washington Post journalist who was killed after entering a Saudi Consulate in Turkey.

In an interview with The Washington Post published Friday, Rep. Adam SchiffAdam Bennett SchiffOvernight Defense: GAO finds administration broke law by withholding Ukraine aid | Senate opens Trump trial | Pentagon to resume training Saudi students soon Schiff schedules public hearing with US intel chief  Harris calls for Parnas to testify at Senate trial MORE (D-Calif.) said probing the CIA's assessment of whether the killing was ordered by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman would be a top priority for Democrats.

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“Certainly we will be delving further into the murder of Khashoggi, and I want to make sure that the committee is fully debriefed on it,” Schiff told the Post.

“We will certainly want to examine what the intelligence community knows about the murder," he added.

Schiff went on in the interview to stress that it was important to determine whether President TrumpDonald John TrumpLev Parnas implicates Rick Perry, says Giuliani had him pressure Ukraine to announce Biden probe Saudi Arabia paid 0 million for cost of US troops in area Parnas claims ex-Trump attorney visited him in jail, asked him to sacrifice himself for president MORE had leaned on CIA sources this week when he refused to implicate the crown prince in the crime, or whether the president was ignoring the assessment of intelligence sources.

“Then it will be quite clear whether the president is relying on the intelligence community and our best source of information or whether the president is representing something very different," Schiff said, referring to the report's release to Congress.

Congress will determine whether Trump “is making representations to the public that are at odds with what we know,” the California Democrat said.

Schiff's comments come a day after President Trump refused to state whether the CIA had determined Crown Prince Mohammed was behind Khashoggi's slaying last month inside a Saudi Consulate in Riyadh, which the U.S.-based journalist had entered to obtain a marriage document.

“They didn’t conclude. They did not come to a conclusion. They have feelings certain ways. … Nobody’s concluded," Trump said Thursday. "I don’t know if anyone’s going to be able to conclude that the crown prince did.”