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‘Maybe he did and maybe he didn’t!’: Trump on Saudi prince’s role in Khashoggi murder

Click to play video: 'Trump says keeping relationship with Saudi Arabia despite Khashoggi case is about ‘America First’' Trump says keeping relationship with Saudi Arabia despite Khashoggi case is about ‘America First’
WATCH: President Donald Trump said they were keeping their relationship with Saudi Arabia because cancelling deals with them would hurt Americans, commenting on his statement on Jamal Khashoggi's death – Nov 20, 2018

U.S. President Donald Trump voiced support for Saudi Arabia in a statement on the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Tuesday’s statement began with the sentence, “The world is a very dangerous place!”

READ MORE: Trump faces pressure by Republicans, U.S. allies for more action on Khashoggi killing

The president went on to praise the kingdom, saying that Saudi Arabia has “agreed to spend billions of dollars in leading the fight against Radical Islamic Terrorism.”

He then defended Saudi Arabia’s role in the Yemen war, writing, “Saudi Arabia would gladly withdraw from Yemen if the Iranians would agree to leave.”

Trump noted that the kingdom has pledged to invest $450 billion in the U.S. He said that will create “thousands of jobs” and “additional wealth.”

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WATCH: Trump reiterates ‘maybe he did, maybe he didn’t’ statement on if Saudi Arabia prince ordered Khashoggi’s killing

Click to play video: 'Trump reiterates ‘maybe he did, maybe he didn’t’ statement on if Saudi Arabia prince ordered Khashoggi’s killing' Trump reiterates ‘maybe he did, maybe he didn’t’ statement on if Saudi Arabia prince ordered Khashoggi’s killing
Trump reiterates ‘maybe he did, maybe he didn’t’ statement on if Saudi Arabia prince ordered Khashoggi’s killing – Nov 20, 2018

If he were to “foolishly cancel” economic deals with Saudi Arabia, Trump said China and Russia would swoop in and take the business.

“It would be a wonderful gift to them directly from the United States!”

The second half of the statement focused to the killing of Khashoggi, a vocal critic of the Saudi royal family who was killed inside the kingdom’s consulate in Istanbul on Oct. 2.

“After great independent research, we now know many details of this horrible crime,” Trump’s statement read.

WATCH: Democrats shocked at Trump response to Khashoggi killing

Click to play video: 'Democrats shocked at Trump response to Khashoggi killing' Democrats shocked at Trump response to Khashoggi killing
Democrats shocked at Trump response to Khashoggi killing – Nov 20, 2018

Trump steered clear of implicating Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in the killing, despite earlier reports that a CIA investigation found he ordered the murder.

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“Our intelligence agencies continue to assess all information, but it could very well be that the Crown Prince had knowledge of this tragic event — maybe he did and maybe he didn’t!”

WATCH: Saudi FM on Khashoggi: ‘We as a government had nothing to do with it’

Click to play video: 'Saudi FM on Khashoggi: ‘We as a government had nothing to do with it’' Saudi FM on Khashoggi: ‘We as a government had nothing to do with it’
Saudi FM on Khashoggi: ‘We as a government had nothing to do with it’ – Nov 21, 2018

He added that “we may never know” all the facts about the murder, but America’s relationship with Saudi Arabia remains in place.

“The United States intends to remain a steadfast partner of Saudi Arabia to ensure the interests of our country, Israel and all other partners in the region,” he said.

READ MORE: Saudi Arabia admits Jamal Khashoggi murder was ‘premeditated’

The U.S. has already placed sanctions on 17 Saudis for their role in the killing.

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The president acknowledged in the statement that members of Congress will demand repercussions on Saudi Arabia over Khashoggi’s killing. He said he will consider their recommendations, but only if they are “consistent with the absolute security and safety of America.”

“Very simply it is called America First!” he concluded.

WATCH: Pompeo backs Trump statement on Saudi Arabia, saying, ‘It’s a mean, nasty world out there’

Click to play video: 'Pompeo backs Trump statement on Saudi Arabia: ‘It’s a mean, nasty world out there’' Pompeo backs Trump statement on Saudi Arabia: ‘It’s a mean, nasty world out there’
Pompeo backs Trump statement on Saudi Arabia: ‘It’s a mean, nasty world out there’ – Nov 20, 2018

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo backed the president’s statement afternoon, after meeting with Foreign Minister Meylut Cavusglu.

“It’s a mean nasty world out there, the Middle East in particular,” Pompeo said.

Saudi Arabia on Khashoggi’s killing

Since October, Saudi Arabia has gone from completely denying any knowledge of Khashoggi’s killing to admitting it was “premeditated.”

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Last week, the country announced it would seek the death penalty for five Saudis involved in the murder.

READ MORE: From fistfight to death penalties — How Saudi Arabia changed its tone on Jamal Khashoggi’s killing

The kingdom has maintained that neither Prince Mohammed nor any member of the royal family had knowledge of the plan to kill the Washington Post columnist.

Khashoggi case not closed: Freeland

Despite Trump’s declaration that the relationship between U.S. and Saudi Arabia will remain unchanged, Canada’s Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland said on Tuesday the Khashoggi case is not closed.

“Canada very much does not consider the Khashoggi affair to be closed,” Freeland said at an Ottawa press conference.

READ MORE: Jamal Khashoggi praised Canada for ‘raising the flag’ on Saudi human rights abuses

“This was an absolutely horrendous premeditated murder, that much is very clear. And the explanations which we have received, which the world has received to date from Saudi Arabia, lack both credibility and coherence.”

Freeland added that Canada wants a “transparent international investigation” into the murder.

“It is very clearly Canada’s position that those responsible for this horrendous murder must face full responsibility for it,” she said.

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WATCH: Freeland says Khashoggi affair is not ‘closed’ despite U.S. response

Click to play video: 'Freeland says Khashoggi affair is not ‘closed’ despite U.S. response' Freeland says Khashoggi affair is not ‘closed’ despite U.S. response
Freeland says Khashoggi affair is not ‘closed’ despite U.S. response – Nov 20, 2018

The minister once again stated that Canada is “actively considering” imposing sanctions on Saudi Arabia over the killing.

Beyond the Khashoggi murder, Freeland reiterated Canada’s position in calling for a ceasefire in Yemen.

WATCH: Some Saudi royals turn against crown prince after Khashoggi murder

Click to play video: 'Some Saudi royals turn against crown prince after Khashoggi murder' Some Saudi royals turn against crown prince after Khashoggi murder
Some Saudi royals turn against crown prince after Khashoggi murder – Nov 20, 2018

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