Officers from Saudi Arabia, the US, Germany, France and Britain have listened to audio recordings associated to the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi on the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul, Turkey’s president mentioned Saturday, within the first public acknowledgement of the existence of tapes of the slaying.
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan additionally advised reporters that Saudi Arabia needed to “act pretty” and disclose these chargeable for the Oct. 2 killing of The Washington Publish journalist to rid itself of “suspicion.”
“We gave them the tapes. We gave them to Saudi Arabia, to America, to the Germans, the French, to the British, to all of them,” Erdogan mentioned earlier than departing for Paris to attend ceremonies marking the 100th anniversary of the tip of World Warfare I.
“They (Saudi officers) additionally listened to the conversations they usually know. There isn’t a must distort this. They know for sure who among the many 15 is the killer or are the killers,” he mentioned.
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He was referring to an alleged 15-member assassination squad that Turkey believes was despatched to kill Khashoggi on the consulate the place he had arrived to acquire papers to marry his Turkish fiancee.
CIA Director Gina Haspel, who visited Turkey final month for info on the investigation, is reported to have heard the audio recordings of the killing. The existence of the recordings was leaked to the media however by no means brazenly confirmed till now.
Turkey says Khashoggi, who was crucial of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, was strangled and dismembered on the consulate as a part of a premeditated killing. Media stories have recommended that his physique might have been chemically dissolved.
Turkey is searching for the extradition of 18 suspects who’ve been detained in Saudi Arabia, to allow them to be placed on trial in Turkey. They embody the 15 members of the alleged assassination squad.
Saudi Arabia had insisted for weeks after Khashoggi disappeared that he had walked out of the consulate, earlier than altering its account to say he died in a brawl.
Final month, Saudi Arabia acknowledged that Turkish proof signifies that Khashoggi’s killing was premeditated, shifting its clarification in an obvious effort to ease worldwide outrage over the demise.
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Saudi officers characterize the killing as a rogue operation carried out by Saudi brokers who exceeded their authority. But a few of these implicated within the killing are near the crown prince, together with a member of the prince’s entourage on international journeys who was seen on the consulate earlier than Khashoggi’s slaying.
Erdogan accused Saudi Arabia’s chief prosecutor, who was despatched to Istanbul final month as a part of a joint probe, of using “delaying ways.”
“Saudi Arabia wants to simply accept that (the killer) is among the many 18 and must do away with the suspicion by responding to Turkey’s good will and performing pretty,” Erdogan mentioned.