Published: Wed, October 24, 2018

Turkey concludes Saudi journalist Khashoggi killed by 'murder' team, sources say

Turkey concludes Saudi journalist Khashoggi killed by 'murder' team, sources say

The President of Turkey says the Saudi Consulate and Istanbul's airports are being closely monitored for clues following a Saudi writer's disappearance.

Erdogan's comments were his most direct suggestion yet of potential Saudi culpability in Khashoggi's disappearance.

"God willing, we will not be faced with the situation we do not desire", he said.

The U.S. State Department and President Donald Trump say they're concerned about the disappearance of Saudi dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi, but they have no idea what happened to him. Saudi authorities have called the allegation "baseless".

Turan Kislakci, a friend of Khashoggi's who was also outside the consulate, told the newspaper, "I think 100 percent that he is inside".

Turkey summons the Saudi ambassador in Ankara to the foreign ministry to discuss Khashoggi's whereabouts. "I would like to confirm that.Jamal is not at the consulate nor in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and the consulate and the embassy are working to search for him", the consul-general, Mohammed al-Otaibi, was quoted as saying.

The US president told reporters Tuesday he knew nothing about Khashoggi's fate.

The prince promised social and economic reform, but Khashoggi pointed to the escalating crackdown on dissent voices and the media in Saudi Arabia.

Relations between the two countries are already strained after Turkey sent troops to the Gulf state of Qatar past year in a show of support after its Gulf neighbours, including Saudi Arabia, imposed an embargo on Doha.

While addressing a joint press conference with Hungarian Prime Minister in Budapest on Monday, Erdogan said, "We have to get an outcome from this investigation as soon as possible".

Turkish police believe Saudi journalist and critic Jamal Khashoggi was murdered inside Saudi Arabia's consulate in Istanbul, a government source said, but Riyadh denied the claim.

The journalist had been critical of Saudi Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman.

Erdogan said the Saudi consulate should have surveillance cameras and should be able to show the video of Khashoggi leaving the building. Turkish police said he never left the building. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., said in a string of tweets Monday that "if there is any truth to the allegations of wrongdoing by the Saudi government it would be devastating to the US-Saudi relationship and there will be a heavy price to be paid-economically and otherwise".

As a contributor to the Post, Khashoggi has written extensively about Saudi Arabia, including criticizing its war in Yemen, its recent diplomatic spat with Canada and its arrest of women's rights activists after the lifting of a ban on women driving.

He expected a measured response from Turkey, which is suffering a currency crisis and would be reluctant to chase away investment from Saudi Arabia or other Gulf states. "Saudi Arabia must return to supporting the Syrian revolution and partnering with Turkey on this".

"There is concrete information; it will not remain an unsolved case", Aktay said Sunday in an interview with the Turkish CNN network, The New York Times reported. The Lebanese al-Akhbar newspaper said that the journalist had been flown to Saudi Arabia with the apparent consent of the Turkish intelligence authorities. Their ambassador to the U.S. insists that he personally had a friendly relationship with Khashoggi and remained in contact whenever both of them were in Washington.

Yemeni activist and 2011 victor of the Nobel Peace Prize, Tawakkol Karman, hit out at the Saudi authorities and told AFP that she believed Khashoggi "was kidnapped in this gangster's den that is supposed to be a consulate".

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