Erdogan says 'highest levels' of Saudi government ordered Khashoggi murder

03 November, 2018, 16:35 | Author: Sheila Harris
  • Perspectives Leon Levy

Khashoggi, who lived in the United States and wrote columns for the Washington Post, went to the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 2 to collect some documents, but he never reappeared.

Khashoggi, 59, was the most powerful journalist in Saudi Arabia at one point of time and was very close to the ruling family. Khashoggi, who had arrived at the consulate to obtain papers to facilitate his marriage with Turkish girlfriend Hatice, was in the Consul General's room when he was grabbed by the squad.

If true, the murder of a journalist inside a diplomatic facility would constitute nothing less than an act of state terror meant to intimidate journalists, dissidents, and exiled critics the world over.

"Khashoggi's body was not in need of burying", said a senior Turkish official, who spoke to the Post on condition of anonymity.

A memorial service marking four weeks since the journalist's death has been held in Washington.

The murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi could alter the power dynamic in the Middle East by strengthening Turkey's influence at Saudi Arabia's expense as they compete for leadership of the Islamic world, analysts say.

Murdered journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

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"As responsible members of the worldwide community, we must reveal the identities of the puppetmasters behind Khashoggi's killing and discover those in whom Saudi officials - still trying to cover up the murder - have placed their trust". He warned that there would be "severe consequences" if any country attempted to commit a similar act in a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation country again.

"If anyone chooses to ignore that warning, they will face severe consequences".

The chief prosecutor's office in Istanbul said that during those meetings, Turkey and Saudi Arabia had "agreed to investigate, search and uncover all details of the event from all angles and to bring those who carried out and planned it to. justice". He said the administration is "reviewing putting sanctions on the individuals that we have been able to identify to date that. were engaged in that murder". "It was meant to leave no trace of the body".

Fidan, the Istanbul prosecutor, on Wednesday said that Khashoggi was strangled shortly after entering the consulate and that his body was dismembered afterward.

Once an adviser to the Saudi royal family, Khashoggi fell out of favour with the government a year ago and went into self-imposed exile.

The Saudi crown prince accused of having a hand in the murder of Jamal Khashoggi reportedly told White House representatives the Washington Post journalist was a Muslim extremist. "In other words, we did not get the impression that they were keen on genuinely cooperating with the investigation", the official said.

"They believe that a government critic can disappear in their diplomatic mission and that those who care about justice will not notice or if they notice they will not object or if they object, they will not remember. We hope the United States reciprocates in kind", Prince Turki Al-Faisal said in an address to the National Council on US-Arab Relations, a non-profit advocacy organization.


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