Pompeo cuts short Middle East tour to attend family funeral

Pompeo cuts short Middle East tour to attend family funeral
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will skip a scheduled visit to Kuwait on his 8-nation tour due to personal commitments.
2 min read
14 January, 2019
Pompeo will travel back to the US after visiting Oman on Monday [AFP]
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will cut short his Middle East tour to attend a family funeral, an official said on Monday.

"Secretary Pompeo will return to the United States after his meetings in Muscat, Oman," State Department deputy spokesman Robert Palladino said in a statement.

"This curtailment of travel is required so that the Pompeo family may attend a family funeral."

Pompeo is currently in Saudi Arabia as part of an extensive eight-day trip to the Middle East, which has included stops in Amman, Cairo, Manama, Abu Dhabi and Doha.

The shortening of his tour means he will not travel to Kuwait after visiting Muscat on Monday.

Palladino said that the Secretary of State will visit Kuwait 
"at an agreeable time in the near future."

Pompeo's trip to Saudi Arabia comes amid sustained international scrutiny of the conservative kingdom over the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi inside the kingdom's consulate in Istanbul.

The secretary of state said on Sunday that he would urge Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to ensure Khashoggi's killers are held accountable for their crime.

"We will continue to have a conversation with the crown prince and the Saudis about ensuring the accountability is full and complete with respect to the unacceptable murder of Jamal Khashoggi," Pompeo told a news conference in Qatar.