President Donald Trump on Tuesday denied having any personal financial interest in Saudi Arabia as his relationship with the country comes under scrutiny amid the disappearance of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi.
“For the record, I have no financial interests in Saudi Arabia (or Russia, for that matter). Any suggestion that I have is just more FAKE NEWS (of which there is plenty)!” the president tweeted.
Trump had said Monday that Saudi King Salman “firmly denied any knowledge of” Khashoggi’s disappearance in a call to Trump, which the president quickly relayed to reporters.
Khashoggi, a vocal critic of the Saudi royal family who had been living in exile in the United States, was last seen entering the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul on Oct. 2.
The president has alleged that “rogue killers” could be responsible for Khashoggi’s disappearance — a remark that critics seized on as evidence that Trump was parroting Saudi leaders’ narrative.
The president’s tweet on Tuesday came after several reports detailed Trump’s relationship with a number of Saudi businessmen and officials over the years.
More recently, a lobbying firm for Saudi Arabia paid Trump International Hotel in Washington more than $270,000 between October 2016 and March 2017 for lodging and catering.