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Rouhani: Saudis wouldn't have killed Khashoggi without U.S. protection

Iran President Rouhani
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani. Photo: Luiz Rampelotto/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani weighed in Wednesday on the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi at Saudi Arabia's consulate in Istanbul, saying he doesn't "think that a country would dare commit such a crime without the protection of America," reports Reuters, citing Iranian state media.

The big picture: Saudi Arabia is key to the U.S. pressure campaign against Iran, a regional enemy of the Saudis and a target of some of the Trump administration's most hawkish rhetoric. As one well-wired Republican told Axios' Mike Allen, "Constraining Iran is the priority and Saudi is a critical ally in that effort. That 'trumps' the horrible human rights violation."

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