U.S. Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky says he will continue efforts to block U.S. arms sales to Saudi Arabia. The Bowling Green Republican says he doesn’t believe Saudi Arabia's explanation of how dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi died earlier this month and feels certain the Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman was involved.
For that reason, Paul says he thinks the the U.S. must take a harder stance on punishing Saudi Arabia. In a conference call with reporters, Senator Paul said sanctions would have no impact.
Paul said, "The only one sanction that might work would be sanctioning the crown prince and I think all the people advocating for sanctions won't go that far."
Senator Paul was a main sponsor of an unsuccessful Senate resolution last year that opposed a 510-million-dollar weapons deal with Saudi Arabia. President Trump and some other Republicans have been hesitant to withdraw arms sales.
Paul said that he thinks the U.S. should still trade with Saudi Arabia and maintain diplomatic relations with the country, but he doesn’t believe America should aid and abet the Saudi war in Yemen. He says the U.S. should also condemn Saudi Arabia for giving weapons to Al-Qaeda and ISIS in Syria.