Turkish authorities plan to search Saudi consulate for missing journalist

Clay Curtis
October 10, 2018

The announcement came as a surveillance image surfaced of Jamal Khashoggi walking into the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul, just before he disappeared.

"The Saudi consulate officials in Istanbul can't get away with [simply] saying 'he left the building.' The claimants are obligated to prove their claims".

US President Donald Trump has told reporters he will speak with Saudi officials to discuss the case.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo called on the Saudi government "to support a thorough investigation of Mr. Khashoggi's disappearance and to be transparent about the results of that investigation".

The search will take place as part of the official investigation, which was being conducted "in an intense manner", he said without giving any date. Both officials spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorised to comment publicly. The Vienna Convention on diplomatic relations allows for consulates to be searched by authorities of a host country with consent of the mission chief, he said.

However, activists protesting outside the consulate said more needed to be done.

That means Turkish police can not enter and search the consulate unless they get permission from the Saudi authorities, which they have now reportedly received.

'As an individual who believes that life and death are in the hands of God, I pray to God alone for Jamal's safe return'.

The Saudi consulate in Istanbul issued a statement Sunday, saying reports that Kashoggi was murdered inside the building were "baseless allegations". That team was sent "specifically for the murder", a person with knowledge of the Turkish investigation tells the Post. The Turkish newspaper Hurriyet also published the image.

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It's unclear which camera the footage came from or who operated it. Closed-circuit TV camera feeds from the preschool opposite the rear entrance have been retrieved by Turkish intelligence, and images from outside the hotels are also being reviewed, according to people familiar with the probe.

The Times report, which cited a senior official in the Ankara government, said Turkish authorities believe Khashoggi was murdered on orders from "the highest levels of the royal court" in Riyadh.

Khashoggi went to the Saudi consulate on Tuesday to get documents for his forthcoming marriage. We ask our panel how much the columnist is a thorn in the side of Mohammed Bin Salman and a régime which insists it's opening up.

Where is Jamal Khashoggi?

Erdogan said "mere words [of Saudi officials] are not enough evidence". Among other things, as MBS told Bloomberg, the visit prompted Riyadh to commit to buying more than 60 percent of its weapons in the next decade from Washington.

"If he left, you have to prove it with footage. You have to prove it". Relations were already strained after Turkey sent troops to the Gulf state of Qatar a year ago in a show of support after its Gulf neighbors, including Saudi Arabia, imposed an embargo on Doha.

A top Senate ally of Trump warned of a "devastating" impact on the USA alliance with Saudi Arabia if allegations are confirmed.

He had been living since past year in the United States, in a self-imposed exile. President Trump said today that he has not spoken with the Saudis about the incident, but he plans to. I don't like hearing about it.

She expresses confidence in the Turkish government officials investigating and adds, "At this time, I implore President Trump and first lady Melania Trump to help shed light on Jamal's disappearance". "Right now, nobody knows anything about it, but there are some pretty bad stories going around".

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