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Jamal Khashoggi case: All the latest updates-2

Source says Khashoggi's body was dissolved in acid in one of the rooms of consul's Istanbul residence.

Recep Tayyip Erdogan's speech

Saudi Arabia has admitted Jamal Khashoggi was killed inside its consulate in the Turkish city of Istanbul.

Khashoggi - a Saudi writer, US resident, and Washington Post columnist - entered the building on October 2 to obtain documentation certifying he had divorced his ex-wife so he could remarry. 

After weeks of repeated denials that it had anything to do with his disappearance, the kingdom eventually acknowledged that the murder was premeditated. The whereabouts of his body are still unknown.

Here are the latest developments:

Monday, November 12

Trudeau: Canada has heard Turkish recordings on Khashoggi's killing

Canadian intelligence has listened to Turkish recordings of what happened to Jamal Khashoggi said Canada Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, although Trudeau added that he himself had not listened to them.

"Canada's intelligence agencies have been working very closely on this issue with Turkish intelligence and Canada has been fully briefed on what Turkey had to share and I had a conversation with Erdogan a couple of weeks ago and here in Paris we had brief exchanges and I thanked him for his strength in responding to the Khashoggi situation," said Trudeau.

"We continue to be engaged with our allies on the investigation into accountability for the murder of Jamal Khashoggi and we are in discussions with our like-minded allies as to the next steps with regard Saudi Arabia," added Trudeau at a news conference in Paris on Monday.

Khashoggi's friends, fiancee demand justice at Istanbul memorial

About 200 people gathered in Istanbul to honour the memory of Khashoggi, demanding justice over the killing.  

Supporters met on Sunday to talk and watch videos of eulogies for the Washington Post contributor, who was killed on October 2 inside Istanbul's Saudi consulate, where he went to handle paperwork for his upcoming marriage. His fiancee was among the participants of the memorial.

Turan Kislakci, head of the Turkish-Arab Media Association (TAM), to which Khashoggi belonged, called for justice to be done "so that these barbaric tyrants can never do the same thing again".

Yemeni human rights activist Tawakkol Karman, who won the 2011 Nobel Peace Prize for her participation in the Arab Spring uprisings, said the killing was reminiscent of crimes committed by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL, also known as ISIS) group.

Saudi crown prince meets British special envoy: SPA

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has discussed bilateral relations with British Prime Minister Theresa May's special envoy, Simon McDonald, the Saudi Press Agency reported on Monday.

McDonald's talks in Riyadh comes as British foreign minister Jeremy Hunt said he will visit Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates on Monday to press for an end to the war in Yemen and to urge Saudi leaders to cooperate with an investigation into the murder of Khashoggi.

UK calls for end to Yemen war, Khashoggi justice

UK Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt visits Saudi Arabia to press Saudi leaders to cooperate with an investigation into Khashoggi's murder.

The visit comes at a time when Riyadh is facing global criticism and potential sanctions over the killing.

Hunt, the first British minister to visit Saudi Arabia since Khashoggi's murder, will call on the Saudi authorities to do more to deliver justice and accountability for his family.

"The international community remain united in horror and outrage at the brutal murder of Jamal Khashoggi one month ago. It is clearly unacceptable that the full circumstances behind his murder still remain unclear," he said.

Sunday, November 11

'I'm suffocating': Khashoggi's last words, says Turkish reporter

The head of investigations at the Turkish Daily Sabah newspaper has said that Jamal Khashoggi's last words were "I'm suffocating ... Take this bag off my head, I'm claustrophobic", according to an audio recording from inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul.

Khashoggi suffocated to death while a plastic bag covered his head, Nazif Karaman said.

Karaman said the murder lasted for about seven minutes, according to the recordings.

Saudi officials 'discussed killing enemies' a year before Khashoggi murder: report

A report by The New York Times has said that Saudi intelligence officials close to Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman met with businessmen in 2017 to discuss manoeuvres to sabotage Iran's economy and broached the possibility of killing Iranian enemies of the kingdom.

During the meeting, Saudi officials asked the businessmen if they "conducted kinetics" - a term used to refere to assassinations - to kill Qassim Suleimani, the leader of the specialised Quds force of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards, the paper reported

"Their discussions, more than a year before the killing of the journalist Jamal Khashoggi, indicate that top Saudi officials have considered assassinations since the beginning of Prince Mohammed’s ascent," wrote The Times.

Saturday, November 10

Trump and Macron say Saudi must give details on Khashoggi killing - report

US President Donald Trump and his French counterpart, Emmanuel Macron, agreed on Saturday that Saudi Arabia needs to shed full light on the events surrounding Khashoggi's murder, Reuters news agency reported, citing a French presidency source.

The two leaders also said the issue should not be allowed to cause further destabilisation in the Middle East and that it could create an opportunity to find a political resolution to the war in Yemen, the official said.

Trump and Macron are in Paris to commemorate the end of World War I.

Erdogan: Turkey shared Khashoggi tapes with Saudi, US and others

Turkey has given recordings on the killing of Jamal Khashoggi to Saudi Arabia, the United States, Germany, France and Britain, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Saturday.

Turkish sources have said previously that authorities have an audio recording purportedly documenting the murder.

Speaking before his departure for France to attend commemorations to mark the 100th anniversary of the end of World War One, Erdogan said Saudi Arabia knows the killer of Jamal Khashoggi is among a group of 15 people who arrived in Turkey one day ahead of the October 2 killing.

"We gave the tapes. We gave them to Saudi Arabia, to the United States, Germans, French and British, all of them. They have listened to all the conversations in them. They know," Erdogan said.

Turkish police 'end search' for Jamal Khashoggi's body

Turkish police are ending the search for the Khashoggi's body, but the criminal investigation into the Saudi journalist's murder will continue, sources said.

MWC News has learned on Friday that traces of acid were found at the Saudi consul-general's residence in Istanbul, where the body was believed to be disposed of with use of chemicals.

The residence is at walking distance from the Saudi consulate, where Khashoggi was allegedly killed by a team of Saudi officers and officials.

Istanbul's chief prosecutor said on October 31 that Khashoggi was strangled as soon as he entered the consulate and that his body was dismembered, in the first official comments on the case.

Friday, November 9

Norway suspends arms export licenses to Saudi Arabia

Norway announced on Friday that it was suspending new licenses for arms exports to Saudi Arabia following recent developments in the Gulf kingdom and the situation in Yemen.

"We have decided that in the present situation, we will not give new licenses for the export of defence material or multipurpose goods for military use to Saudi Arabia," Foreign Minister Ine Eriksen Soereide said in a statement.

While Khashoggi's murder was not mentioned, the statement said the decision had been taken following "a broad assessment of recent developments in Saudi Arabia and the unclear situation in Yemen".

The announcement came a week after Norway's foreign minister summoned the Saudi ambassador to Oslo to protest Khashoggi's assassination.

Germany said last month that it would halt its arms exports to Saudi Arabia until the killing of Khashoggi was explained.

Khashoggi's fiancee shocked by reports his body was dissolved

Hatice Cengiz, Khashoggi's fiancee, has expressed "shock and sadness" over reports suggesting that his body may have been dissolved with chemicals.

Cengiz said on Twitter late Thursday that Khashoggi's killers had deprived his loved ones of conducting funeral prayers and burying him in the holy city of Medina as he had wished.

In a message to The Associated Press on Friday, Cengiz said she has not received any information from officials to confirm the reports.

Thursday, November 8 

Bin Salman: Khashoggi's killers would be punished

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman told a group of American evangelical leaders earlier this month that those responsible for Khashoggi's killing would be punished.

He also stressed that the crisis must not shift focus away from Iran's threat to the region and the world, according to the delegation's organiser.

In an article posted on Axios, a news website, Barak Ravid of Israel's Channel 10 news quotes Joel Rosenberg as saying bin Salman accused his "enemies" of exploiting Khashoggi's murder, which he called a "heinous act".

Axios: MBS met with US evangelicals, said Khashoggi's killers would be punished

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman told a group of American evangelical leaders on November 1 that those responsible for Khashoggi's killing would be punished but stressed that the crisis must not shift focus away from Iran's threat to the region and the world, according to the delegation's organiser.

In an article posted on Axios, a news website, Barak Ravid of Israel's Channel 10 news quotes Joel Rosenberg as saying bin Salman accused his "enemies" of exploiting Khashoggi's murder, which he called a "heinous act".

The meeting, which lasted some two hours, was scheduled before the Khashoggi crisis erupted.

Traces of acid, chemicals found in Saudi consul's home

A source in the Turkish attorney general’s office said that the investigative team found traces of hydrofluoric acid and other chemicals inside a well at the Saudi consul general's home in Istanbul.

The source said the killers dissolved the journalist's dismembered body in acid in one of the rooms at Consul General Mohammed al-Otaibi’s residence.   

Wednesday, November 7

Israeli spyware technology may have been used to track down, kill Khashoggi: Snowden 

Software made by Israeli-based cyber security firm NSO Group Technologies may have been used to track down Khashoggi, fugitive US whistleblower Edward Snowden told an Israeli audience via video conference.

Snowden said the phone of one of Khashoggi's friends, Omar Abdulaziz - who lives in exile in Canada - had been infected with NSO's Pegasus spyware. The whistleblower, who now lives in Russia, said the software allowed Saudis to collect information about Khashoggi through Abdulaziz. 

"The Saudis, of course, knew that Khashoggi was going to go to the consulate, as he got an appointment. But how did they know his intention and plans?" 

"[NSO Group] is the worst of the worst in selling these burglary tools, that are being actively used to violate the human rights of dissidents, opposition figures, activists, to some pretty bad players," Snowden said, "but they are not alone." 

Donald Trump: 'Much stronger opinion next week'

US President Donald Trump has said he will have a "much stronger opinion" on the killing of dissident Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi "over the next week".

Trump said he is working with the US Congress, Turkey and Saudi Arabia on solving the October 2 killing at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul.

"I am forming a very strong opinion," the US president said during a press conference at the White House. 

Saudi king issues pardons, unveils projects on domestic tour

Saudi Arabia's king has begun a domestic tour with a first stop in the conservative heartland of Qassim province, where he pardoned prisoners serving time on finance charges and announced 16bn riyals - about $4.27bn - in new projects.

This is King Salman's first such tour since he ascended to the throne in 2015 and comes as the kingdom faces international pressure following the killing of writer Jamal Khashoggi in the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul last month.

The state-run news agency reported on Wednesday that the government would pay debts of up to 1m riyals, or $267,000, on behalf of each of the pardoned prisoners.

Tuesday, November 6 

Egypt's leader faults media coverage of Khashoggi slaying 

The president of Egypt has said media coverage played a "negative role" in the case of Khashoggi. 

"We need to stop and wait for the relevant authorities and judicial bodies (in Saudi Arabia) to announce the outcome of the investigations," Abdel-Fattah el-Sisi told reporters on Tuesday. 

Last month, Egypt called for a transparent investigation into the disappearance of the journalist and warned against the case being used to politically exploit Saudi Arabia.

Saudi Arabia and Egypt have a close relationship. The kingdom has given Egypt billions of dollars in aid in recent years.

EU urges Saudi cooperation with Turkish authorities 

The European Commission has called on Saudi Arabia to collaborate with Turkish authorities on investigating the killing of the Saudi journalist. 

"We expect Saudi institutions to provide all the information they have about the case and ensure that those responsible are brought to justice. This needs to be done in full collaboration with the Turkish authorities," commission spokesperson Maja Kocijancic said on Tuesday.

"From the very beginning, we have been asking Saudi Arabia to shed light on the killing of Jamal Khashoggi through a full credible, transparent and prompt investigation," she added.

In a non-binding resolution on October 25, the European Parliament condemned "in the strongest possible terms" the reported torture and killing of the journalist.

The parliament urged an "independent and impartial", international probe of the killing, also warning that targeted sanctions could be imposed if Saudi agents are found guilty in his death.

CIA chief seen all evidence in relation to Khashoggi murder - source

A Turkish security source has said CIA Director Gina Haspel has seen all the evidence related to Khashoggi's killing.

The evidence proves the operation was carried out on orders from the highest level of leadership in Saudi Arabia, the source added.

Haspel was in Turkey last week to review evidence, before briefing US President Donald Trump in Washington, DC.

Turkish sources also said that Saudi Arabia would pay "blood money" or compensation to Khashoggi's family and his fiancee.

Saudis tampered with CCTV cameras after Khashoggi murder: report

Turkish media have reported that staff at Saudi Arabia's consulate in Istanbul tried to dismantle security cameras to help cover up the murder of Khashoggi.

The pro-government Sabah newspaper reported that the Saudis tried to rip out the camera inside the consulate on October 2, the day Khashoggi was murdered.

They also tried to tamper with cameras at the police security booth outside the building.

According to the report, at 1am on October 6, a consulate member staff went into the police security post outside the Saudi consulate to access the video system.

Sabah reported that the staff member put a digital lock code into the system, which did not dismantle any cameras but rather was intended to prevent access to any videos showing movement at the entrance, including Khashoggi's arrival at the consulate.

Monday, November 5

Khashoggi's sons appeal for return of his body

The sons of the slain Saudi journalist issued an appeal for the return of their father's body and said they wanted to return to Saudi Arabia to bury him.

In an interview with CNN, Salah and Abdullah Khashoggi said without their father's body, their family is unable to grieve and deal with the emotional burden of their father's death.

"It's not a normal situation; it's not a normal death at all. All what we want right now is to bury him in Al-Baqi [cemetery] in Medina [Saudi Arabia] with the rest of his family," Salah Khashoggi said.

"I talked about that with the Saudi authorities and I just hope that it happens soon."

Salah Khashoggi on October 24 met in Riyadh with the crown prince and King Salman to receive condolences along with other Khashoggi family members. Salah departed for Washington a day later, and his CNN interview was his first public comments since then.

He said King Salman assured him those involved in Khashoggi's murder would be brought to justice.

"We just need to make sure that he rests in peace," Salah Khashoggi said of his father. "Until now, I still can't believe that he's dead. It's not sinking in with me emotionally," he said, adding there has been a lot of "misinformation" about the circumstances of the death.

Salah said accusations that his father was a supporter of the Muslim Brotherhood organisation were not true.

Asked how Khashoggi should be remembered, Salah replied, "As a moderate man who has common values with everyone ... a man who loved his country, who believed so much in it and its potential."

"Jamal was never a dissident. He believed in the monarchy, that it is the thing that is keeping the country together. And he believed in the transformation that it is going through."

Saudi human rights record in UN spotlight

Countries gather at the UN in Geneva to review the rights record of Saudi Arabia as it faces a torrent of international condemnation over Khashoggi's murder.

Monday's so-called Universal Periodic Review - which all 193 UN countries must undergo every four years - is likely to also focus on Saudi Arabia's role in Yemen's brutal civil war. Washington, which has long backed the Saudi-led coalition, called last week for an end to air strikes in the country.

The Saudi delegation in Geneva will be headed by Bandar Al Aiban, who serves as the head of the country's Human Rights Commission.

The delegation will present a report over the country's efforts to live up to its international human rights obligations, and will respond to questions and comments from countries around the world on its record.

Activists are urging countries not to hold back.

"UN member states must end their deafening silence on Saudi Arabia and do their duty of scrutinising the cruelty in the kingdom in order to prevent further outrageous human rights violations in the country and in Yemen," Samah Hadid, Amnesty International's Middle East director of campaigns, said in a statement.

"The Saudi government's long-standing repression of critics, exemplified by the extrajudicial execution of journalist Jamal Khashoggi last month, has until recently been wilfully ignored by UN member states."

A number of countries have already submitted lists of detailed questions for the review, including direct questions from Britain, Austria and Switzerland on the Khashoggi case.

Sweden, meanwhile, is planning to ask: "What measures will be taken to improve the respect for the freedom of expression and the safety of journalists in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia?"

Sunday, November 4

US to hold Khashoggi's killers 'accountable' but 'ensure' partnership with Saudi Arabia

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has told Fox News the United States will hold all those responsible for the murder of Jamal Khashoggi "accountable ... while ensuring the strategic relationship with Saudi Arabia". 

Pompeo listed Saudi Arabia's ability to "deny" Iran "the ability to threaten America and Israel" as one of the reasons to maintain a strategic relationship with the kingdom, whose crown prince is under scrutiny over suspicions of his role in Khashoggi's murder.

The US and Iran face a renewed sense of animosity as a second round of sanctions on Tehran begin on Monday.

In May this year, the Trump administration unilaterally withdrew from a landmark 2015 multinational nuclear deal with Iran.

US President Donald Trump has warned of consequences for those responsible for Khashoggi's killing.

However, the Trump administration has been reluctant to suggest severe sanctions, such as cancelling arms deals with Saudi, citing the impact on the US economy.

Saturday, November 3 

Rights group 'renames' street outside Saudi's London embassy after slain journalist 

Amnesty International renamed the street outside Saudi Arabia's embassy in London as "Khashoggi Street" with a mock sign to mark the one month anniversary since the journalist's killing in Turkey. 

"The whole world has been shocked by this grotesque killing, and it's vital that we don't let the outrage fade away without justice," said Amnesty International's UK Director Kate Allen. 

"We need to see Jamal Khashoggi's killers brought to justice - not only those who carried out the murder but those who ordered it and knew it was about to happen." 

Writers, artists and activists call on UN to probe killing 

Meryl Streep, JK Rowling and Zadie Smith joined more than 100 artists, writers and activists in signing an open letter calling on the United Nations to launch an independent investigation into the murder of Khashoggi. 

Addressed to the UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres, the letter - which came on the international day to end impunity for crimes against journalists - was put together by Pen America, a non-profit aimed at defending freedom of expression. 

"The violent murder of a prominent journalist and commentator on foreign soil is a grave violation of human rights and a disturbing escalation of the crackdown on dissent in Saudi Arabia, whose government in recent years has jailed numerous writers, journalists, human rights advocates and lawyers in a sweeping assault on free expression and association," reads the letter

"The murder of a journalist inside a diplomatic facility would constitute nothing less than an act of state terror intended to intimidate journalists, dissidents and exiled critics the world over," the letter reads.

Friday, November 2

Erdogan: Order came from highest levels of Saudi government

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has said the order for Khashoggi's killing came from the "highest levels" of the Saudi government but said he does not believe King Salman ordered the hit.  

In an opinion piece in the Washington Post, Erdogan said "we must reveal the identities of the puppet masters behind Khashoggi's killing". He added that Turkey has "moved heaven and earth" to bring the truth to light.

"We are shocked and saddened by the efforts of certain Saudi officials to cover up Khashoggi's premeditated murder, rather than serve the cause of justice, as our friendship would require," Erdogan said.

After criticising Saudi Arabia's consul general and the kingdom's public prosecutor who recently met with Turkish officials, Erdogan adopted a more conciliatory tone, stressing that Turkey and Saudi Arabia continued to enjoy friendly relations and that he had "no reasons to believe that this murder reflected Saudi Arabia's official policy". 

The Turkish president again expressed dismay that Saudi Arabia has still not revealed who ordered the assassination, along with the location of Khashoggi's remains or the identity of the attackers' local collaborator. 

"Some seem to hope this "problem" will go away in time. But we will keep asking those questions, which are crucial to the criminal investigation in Turkey, but also to Khashoggi's family and loved ones," Erdogan said.

Mourners hold 'funeral prayer' for Khashoggi at US memorial

Friends and mourners gathered in Washington, DC on Friday to attend a memorial event for Khashoggi.

The service included a funeral prayer known as "salat al-ghaib" or "prayer for the absent", which Muslims perform for the deceased when their body has not been found.

Khashoggi's fiancee Hatice Cengiz delivered a recorded message at the memorial, calling on the Saudis to release information about the whereabouts of Khashoggi's body, so that he can be buried according to Muslim rite.

Others present at the memorial included Khashoggi's colleagues, US politicians, rights activists, and Saudi dissidents, including Abdullah al-Awdah, whose father, the reformist Islamic scholar Salman al-Awdah, is currently detained by Saudi Arabia.

Khashoggi's body 'dismembered and dissolved'

An adviser to Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has said the team that killed Khashoggi cut up his body in order to dissolve for easier disposal.

Yasin Aktay, who was a friend of Khashoggi's, told Hurriyet newspaper that the corpse was disposed of by dismembering and dissolving it.

"We now see that it wasn't just cut up, they got rid of the body by dissolving it," he said.

"According to the latest information we have, the reason they dismembered his body is to dissolve it easier," added Aktay.

"They aimed to ensure no sign of the body was left."

Meanwhile, a senior Turkish official has also said the journalist's body was dismembered and dissolved in acid.

The official also said that the Saudi hit squad that carried out the killing has done similar operations before.

Earlier, a Turkish official had also told the Washington Post that authorities were investigating a theory the body was destroyed in acid.

Netanyahu: Khashoggi killing horrendous but Iran a bigger problem

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has called the murder of Khashoggi "horrendous" but said preserving stability in the region and confronting Iran were more pressing matters.

"What happened in the Istanbul consulate ... should be duly dealt with. Yet at the same time I say ... it is very important for the stability of the world, for the region and for the world, that Saudi Arabia remain stable," Netanyahu said.

"I think that a way must be found to achieve both goals. Because the larger problem is Iran."

Norway summons Saudi ambassador over Khashoggi murder

Norwegian Foreign Minister Ine Eriksen Soereide said in a statement his country summoned the Saudi ambassador to Oslo on Thursday over the killing of Khashoggi. 

"We have raised the murder of Jamal Khashoggi and presented our point of view to the Saudi ambassador several times after it was known," Soereide said.

"We underlined how seriously we take this issue again yesterday, when he was at the Foreign Ministry for a discussion."

Khashoggi fiancee calls on international community to act, prosecute those behind killing 

Hatice Cengiz, the slain journalist's fiancee, urged the international community to take action and hold those responsible for the crime to account. 

"Today, I am inviting the international community to take serious and practical steps to reveal the truth and to prosecute those involved in a court of law," Cengiz wrote in an opinion piece published by the Guardian newspaper.

"I am not naïve. I know that governments operate not on feelings but on mutual interests. However, they must all ask themselves a fundamental question."

"If the democracies of the world do not take genuine steps to bring to justice the perpetrators of this brazen, callous act - one that has caused universal outrage among their citizens - what moral authority are they left with? Whose freedom and human rights can they credibly continue to defend?"

MBS describes Khashoggi as 'dangerous Islamist' in call with Kushner, Bolton

Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (commonly referred to as MBS) described Khashoggi as a dangerous Islamist after his disappearance in a phone call with Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner and National Security Adviser John Bolton, the Washington Post reported on Thursday. 

During the alleged phone call, which took place prior to Saudi Arabia admitting to the killing of Khashoggi, bin Salman said the journalist belonged to the Muslim Brotherhood, which was outlawed by Saudi Arabia and its allies in the wake of the Arab Spring protests. 

He also urged Kushner and Bolton to preserve the US-Saudi alliance. 


READ MORE: Mohammed bin Salman described Khashoggi as 'dangerous Islamist'


"The attempt to criticise Khashoggi in private," the Post noted, "stands in contrast to the Saudi government's later public statements decrying his death as a 'terrible mistake' and 'terrible tragedy'".

The slain journalist's family issued a statement to the paper denying the crown prince's characterisation as inaccurate. 

"Jamal Khashoggi was not a member of the Muslim Brotherhood. He denied such claims repeatedly over the past several years," the family said, "Jamal Khashoggi was not a dangerous person in any way possible."

"To claim otherwise would be ridiculous."

Gates Foundation suspends work with Saudi crown prince's charity 

The Bill and Melinda Gates foundation is suspending future projects with the Misk Foundation, a non-profit chaired by Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. 

"Jamal Khashoggi's abduction and murder are extremely troubling," a spokeswoman for the foundation told the Wall Street Journal. 

"The current situation was a factor in our decision to hold off on future rounds." 

The Gates Foundation agreed to fund half of a $10 million project with its Saudi partner, dubbed the "Misk Grand Challenges". The project aims to give grants to young people around the world for health and development initiatives. 

The Gates Foundation, which has completed the first round of $1.5m in funding, said it will honour its obligations to projects already underway. 

Thursday, November 1

US says Khashoggi's remains should be located

The US State Department has said the slain journalist's body should be found and returned to their family as soon as possible. 

The comments came after State Secretary Mike Pompeo said in a radio interview "that the murder of Jamal Khashoggi is completely unacceptable. It's out of bounds; it’s not the way nations behave."

Pompeo said it would take a "handful more weeks" before the US has enough evidence to impose sanctions in response to the killing.

He also pointed to a "long-time, deep set of strategic relationships," including Saudi Arabia's petroleum production and countering Iranian expansion in the region, as "important American national security interests".

Saudi authorities did not respond to questions over Khashoggi killing: Turkey’s justice minister

Turkish Justice Minister Abdulhamit Gul said his country's questions on the killing of Khashoggi on October 2 have not been answered by Saudi Arabia.

Speaking in the capital, Ankara, Gul demanded close cooperation from Saudi authorities to uncover details of the famed critic's killing inside the kingdom's consulate in Istanbul.

He reiterated that responsibility for the criminal act is "unavoidable" and cannot be "covered up" and said Khashoggi's body hasn't been found yet. 

Pressure grows on UK to sanction Saudi Arabia

The UK's foreign secretary was pressed by a select committee on how to deal with Saudi Arabia over Khashoggi's killing.

Jeremy Hunt called the murder appalling and said it highlighted the threat to journalists.

"If these stories are true - as they've been reported - it is nothing short of utterly and totally shocking… There will be an impact on the relationship with Saudi Arabia," Hunt told the committee.

"It has brought into sharp focus that we cannot take for granted media freedom."

He said it was possible Khashoggi's killing has given the United States and the United Kingdom the opportunity to push Saudi Arabia to improve its human rights record.

"It is because we have that strategic relationship with Saudi Arabia, because America has that relationship, that we are in a position to ask them to do things we couldn't do if we didn't have that relationship. And so now what we need to do is use that relationship to push for progress," he later told the BBC.

"It is too early to say there are green shoots. There are still terrible things happening every day. The humanitarian situation is truly appalling. But there is an opportunity now and we must grasp it."

Wednesday, October 31

Turkey's ruling AK Party says Khashoggi killing not possible without orders from above 

A spokesperson for President Erdogan's AK Party said Khashoggi's killing could not have been made possible without orders from someone in a senior position. 

Omar Celik told reporters in Ankara that Turkey would not let anyone cover up Khashoggi's killing, adding that it was not possible for Saudi officials to still not know of the body's whereabouts.  

Khashoggi was strangled as soon as he entered the consulate: Turkish prosecutor 

Jamal Khashoggi was strangled as soon as he entered the Saudi consulate in Istanbul and then dismembered as part of a premeditated plan, Turkey's chief prosecutor said on Wednesday, making details of the murder public for the first time.

The revelations came just hours after Saudi Arabia's chief prosecutor left Istanbul, and the Turkish prosecutor's office said it was "obliged" to reveal the details after the talks produced "no concrete results".

Gruesome reports in the Turkish media had previously alleged that Khashoggi, a 59-year-old Washington Post contributor critical of the powerful Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, had been killed and cut into pieces by a team sent from Riyadh to silence him. His body has not been found.

"In accordance with plans made in advance, the victim, Jamal Khashoggi, was strangled to death immediately after entering the Consulate General of Saudi Arabia in Istanbul on October 2, 2018 for marriage formalities," said a statement from the office of Istanbul chief prosecutor Irfan Fidan.

"The victim's body was dismembered and destroyed following his death by suffocation - again, in line with advance plans," it added.

"Despite our well-intentioned efforts to reveal the truth, no concrete results have come out of those meetings."  

Saudi prosecutor completes inspection, heads to airport  

Saudi Arabia's public prosecutor has completed his inspections in Turkey and is heading back to Riyadh after he held three days of talks with Turkish officials as part of the investigation into Khashoggi's killing. 

Saud al-Mojeb carried out inspections at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, where Khashoggi was killed earlier this month, and held meetings with Turkey's public prosecutor and Turkish intelligence officials.

King Salman's brother 'returns to Riyadh' amid Khashoggi crisis

The only surviving full brother of Saudi Arabia's King Salman has reportedly returned to the kingdom, amid international outcry over the killing of Khashoggi.

Prince Ahmad bin Abdulaziz flew back to Riyadh from London on Tuesday, according to three Saudi sources close to the prince cited by The New York Times, in what some analysts are calling a potential challenge to the authority of Saudi Arabia's de-facto ruler Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

London-based Middle East Eye also reported Prince Ahmad's return, quoting a source close to the prince as saying his return is intended to shake up the kingdom's leadership.

Prince Ahmad's arrival has not been officially confirmed by Riyadh.

Turkey doubts Saudi willingness to 'genuinely cooperate' 

Saudi Arabian officials have appeared unwilling to "genuinely cooperate" with Turkey's investigation into the murder of Khashoggi, a senior Turkish official said.

"The Saudi officials seemed primarily interested in finding out what evidence the Turkish authorities had against the perpetrators," the official told AFP news agency on the condition of anonymity.

"We did not get the impression that they were keen on genuinely cooperating with the investigation."

French FM: sanctions against Saudi Arabia possible

France has not ruled out any sanctions against Saudi Arabia if its authorities are found to be involved in Khashoggi's killing, French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said on Wednesday.

"So long as those who are responsible and the circumstances around the killing are not made public, released and evaluated, we will go on demanding the truth," Le Drian told RTL radio. "So far we don't have it."

"We'll take the necessary measures against those who are responsible," he said, adding that France didn't rule out any sanctions against Saudi Arabia, which is a large buyer of French exports, including weapons and luxury goods. 

While criticising Germany for halting arms sales to Riyadh before investigations conclude, Le Drian downplayed the importance of weapons sales to Saudi Arabia for the French, saying they represented only 7 percent of the country's overall weapon exports.

"We are not dependent on Saudi Arabia on that matter," he said. 

Gulf investors sell $273m in Saudi stocks in October: Reuters

Foreign investors, including those from other Gulf states, were net sellers of Saudi equities for most of October, partly because of fear that Khashoggi's killing could damage Saudi ties with the West and lead to economic sanctions, according to a monthly poll by Reuters news agency.

Gulf investors sold a net total of $273m of Saudi stocks between October 8 and 26, according to exchange data. However, the poll of 13 leading Middle Eastern fund managers, suggested that most funds do not intend to continue selling.

Twenty-three percent expect to raise their allocations to Saudi equities in the next three months and the same proportion to reduce them. September's poll showed that 38 percent anticipated increasing Saudi allocations and none foresaw cutting them.

Many managers are still looking ahead to estimated inflows into Saudi Arabia of about $15 billion of "passive" funds next year when Riyadh's market joins emerging market indexes. Because this money is closely linked to the indexes, it is unlikely to be affected by geopolitics.

Saudi prosecutor meets with Turkish intelligence agency

Saudi Arabia's public prosecutor held talks overnight with Turkish intelligence officials over the investigation into Khashoggi's murder, according to Demiroren news agency. 

The Turkish news agency said Saud al-Mojed left his hotel shortly after midnight and went to the Istanbul regional offices of Turkey's National Intelligence Agency (MIT). It is not clear how long he stayed.

StanChart pushes ahead with Saudi Arabia license application

Standard Charter is pressing on with its application for a banking licence in Saudi Arabia, despite global outcry over Khashoggi's murder.

"We have taken account of recent events, but conversely this is about running a business for the long term and that process will continue," Andy Halford, the bank's chief financial officer said on Wednesday.

The bank announced in October last year that it was talking to regulators about applying for a licence in the kingdom.

On Monday, StanChart's rival HSBC said it expected the Khashoggi case would have little long-term impact on Saudi Arabia investment.

Tuesday, October 30

UN rights chief calls for international role in Khashoggi inquiry 

United Nations human rights Chief Michelle Bachelet called for international experts to take part in an independent investigation into the killing of Khashoggi, with access to evidence and witnesses. 

Bachelet also urged Saudi Arabia to reveal the whereabouts of Khashoggi's body, adding that a forensic examination and autopsy were crucial in the ongoing investigation into the "shockingly brazen crime" carried out in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul. 

Erdogan: No point in protecting culprits in Khashoggi murder

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan called on Saudi Arabia's chief prosecutor to find out who ordered the murder of Khashoggi, and not spare "certain people" in his investigation.

"Who sent these 15 people? As Saudi public prosecutor, you have to ask that question, so you can reveal it," Erdogan said, referring to the 15-man team suspected of being behind the hit.

"Now we have to solve this case. No need to prevaricate, it makes no sense to try to protect certain people," he told reporters in Ankara.

Erdogan said the Turkish prosecutor had told his Saudi counterpart that the 18 suspects in the case could be tried in Turkey. Saudi officials also needed to reveal the identity of a local cooperator said to have been involved in Khashoggi's disappearance, he said.

Susan Rice in NYT: Saudi Arabia a partner we can't depend on

Susan Rice, the former US national security adviser during Obama's second term, has lashed out at Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, in an opinion piece in the New York Times.

In the op-ed, Rice said that the "brazen murder of Jamal Khashoggi raises a critical question that the Trump administration plainly wants to avoid: Can the United States continue to cooperate with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman?

"The young prince's almost certain culpability in Mr. Khashoggi’s killing underscores his extreme recklessness and immorality, while exposing him as a dangerous and unreliable partner for the United States."

Saudi prosecutor visits Istanbul consulate

Saudi Arabia's chief prosecutor on Tuesday visited the consulate in Istanbul where Khashoggi was murdered, according to an AFP journalist at the scene.

The head of the Saudi investigation, Attorney General Sheikh Saud al-Mojeb, visited the consulate after meeting for the second time with Istanbul chief prosecutor Irfan Fidan.

Turks receive testimonies from 18 Saudi suspects

Saudi prosecutors have handed over the testimonies by the 18 suspects of the killing of Khashoggi to Turkish officials, a source in the Turkish Attorney General's office said.

The move comes after sources said that Istanbul's chief prosecutor's office was left "unsatisfied" following a meeting with Saudi Arabia's top prosecutor over Khashoggi's killing.

Saud al-Mojeb, who arrived in Istanbul from Riyadh on Sunday, had been expected to provide the testimonies from the 18 suspects being held in Saudi Arabia, but according to the sources he initially failed to hand over the statements.

Monday, October 29 

Khashoggi's fiancee speaks at London memorial, calls for justice

Hatice Cengiz, Khashoggi's fiancee, has addressed a memorial for the slain journalist in London.

The event in the British capital was attended by politicians, journalists and activists.

Cengiz said Khashoggi "felt it was his duty to be the voice of the voiceless", before repeating her demand for justice to be served.

"I want the role of the political leadership in this brutal killing to be brought to light. I want justice for Jamal," she told the crowd.

"I call upon the conscience of humanity and the international community, please help us to reveal the truth and hold the perpetrators and their masters to account for their crimes.

"I want to bury the body of the beloved Jamal. Therefore I am asking once again, where is his body? I believe that the Saudi regime knows where his body is. They should answer my demand. For this is not only the demand of a fiancee, but a human and Islamic demand from everyone, every nation.

"I want justice to be served. Not only for those who murdered my beloved Jamal, but for those who organised it and gave the order of it. These questions are not just my questions, they are now being asked by millions."

Last week, speaking to Turkish media, Cengiz said she had declined an invitation by the White House, saying she perceived US President Donald Trump's move to be "a statement to win public favour".

During her speech in London, Cengiz said: "President Trump should help reveal the truth and ensure justice be served. He should not pave the way for a cover up of my fiancee's murder. Let's not let money taint our conscience and compromise our values.

"There should be no cover-up. Jamal was my beloved fiancee, but he was also a gentle human being, a loving man, a journalist and true believer in freedom and democracy in the Arab world. Let's demand justice for Jamal and stand up for his ideals."

Turkey 'unsatisfied' following meeting with Saudi prosecutor: sources

Sources have said that Istanbul's chief prosecutor's office was left "unsatisfied" following a meeting with Saudi Arabia's top prosecutor over Khashoggi's killing.

Saud al-Mojeb, who arrived in Istanbul from Riyadh on Sunday, had been expected to provide testimonies from the 18 suspects being held in Saudi Arabia, but according to the sources he did not.

Turkey called for the suspects to be extradited from the kingdom, saying their alleged use of a local collaborator in the killing was a legitimate reason for them to face trial on Turkish soil.

Saudi and Turkish prosecutors meet 

The Saudi public prosecutor leading the country's investigation into Khashoggi's death has met Istanbul's chief prosecutor at the city's court on Monday, according to Turkish state news agency Anadolu. 

The meeting reportedly lasted about 75 minutes, but no information has so far been released as to what the two men discussed.

Shortly after the meeting ended, Turkey's Minister of Foreign Affairs Mevlut Cavusoglu said that the sharing of information between Saudi and Turkish prosecutors will be useful and that Saudi Arabia should conclude the investigation into Khashoggi's killing as soon as possible. 

He also called on Saudi Arabia to reveal "the whole truth" regarding the killing of the journalist, Reuters news agency reported.

HSBC chief: Khashoggi case likely to have only 'limited impact' on Saudi economy

HSBC's Chief Executive, John Flint, said Saudi Arabia is unlikely to see any significant impact on its trade and investment flows following Khashoggi's killing.

Speaking to Reuters news agency on Monday, Flint acknowledged that the case had damaged the kingdom's reputation internationally, but that any negative feeling will likely not be reflected in trade.

"It has been a difficult few weeks for the kingdom, this has not been good for Saudi Arabia.

"I understand the emotion around the story, but it is very difficult to think about disengaging from Saudi Arabia given its importance to global energy markets," he said.

Saudi prosecutor Saud al-Mojeb has arrived overnight in Istanbul, where he will meet Irfan Fidan, the city's chief public prosecutor, to discuss the latest findings in the Khashoggi case, Anadolu news agency reported.

According to a source at the Istanbul prosecutor's office, who spoke on condition of anonymity, Fidan will ask al-Mojeb to conduct another joint search at the consul-general's residence.

Meanwhile, the dossier that will be presented to al-Mojeb in Monday's meeting will include interviews with 45 consulate employees.

Sunday, October 28

Turkey to present Saudi probe findings, request residence search

Turkish investigators looking into Khashoggi's killing will present Saudi Arabia's top prosecutor with a 150-page dossier and request another joint search at the residence of the kingdom's consul-general in Istanbul, according to a Turkish source.

Saudi prosecutor Saud al-Mojeb will meet on Monday Irfan Fidan, the Istanbul chief public prosecutor, to discuss the latest findings in the case.

According to a source at the Istanbul prosecutor's office, who spoke  on condition of anonymity, Fidan will ask al-Mojeb to conduct another joint search at the consul-general's residence. 

Meanwhile, the dossier that will be presented to al-Mojeb in Monday's meeting will include interviews with 45 consulate employees.

According to the source, the file also identifies four people as the prime suspects in Khashoggi's killing but names only three of them: Saudi Consul-General Mohammed al-Otaibi, forensics expert Saleh al-Tubaiqi and Maher Abdulaziz Mutreb, who was identified as being part of a 15-member team of suspected Saudi agents who flew into and out of Istanbul on October 2, the day of Khashoggi's disappearance.

The fourth person who will be presented as a main suspect is an unnamed "local collaborator" who, according to Riyadh, was given Khashoggi's body in order to dispose of it.

Saudi station chief 'explored forest a day before Khashoggi's murder'

Police sources have told Turkish media that the Saudi consul station chief in Istanbul went to a forest north of the city a day before Khashoggi's killing.

A CCTV image, obtained by state television network TRT and other media, showed a black car with a diplomatic license plate at an entrance to Belgrad Forest on October 1.

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said earlier this week that consulate officials made "reconnaissance" trips to the forest as well as the city of Yalova a day before Khashoggi was killed.

Top Saudi prosecutor to arrive in Turkey

Saudi Arabia's attorney general is set to arrive in Turkey to hold talks with investigators looking into the killing of Khashoggi. Earlier reports said the top prosecutor, Saud al-Mojeb, had already arrived.

Turkey has said al-Mojeb is expected to discuss the latest findings of the probe with Turkish investigators.

Ther visit comes just days after CIA director Gina Haspel was in Turkey to review evidence before briefing the US president.

Turkey is seeking the extradition of 18 Saudi suspects detained in the kingdom in connection with the October 2 killing.

Saudi Arabia's foreign minister appeared to reject that notion in remarks on Saturday, saying the kingdom would try the perpetrators and bring them to justice after the investigation was completed.

UK knew of Saudi plot to kidnap Khashoggi three weeks before killing - Express

Britain's Sunday Express newspaper is reporting that the United Kingdom was made aware of a plot to kidnap Jamal Khashoggi and take him back to Saudi Arabia, three weeks before he entered the Saudi consulate in Istanbul and was killed.

An intelligence source told the Sunday Express: "We were initially made aware that something was going in the first week of September, around three weeks before Mr. Khashoggi walked into the consulate on October 2.

"These details included primary orders to capture Mr. Khashoggi and bring him back to Saudi Arabia for questioning. However, the door seemed to be left open for alternative remedies to what was seen as a big problem.

"We know the orders came from a member of the royal circle but have no direct information to link them to Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman."

The source added that MI6 had warned their Saudi counterparts to cancel the mission, though this request was ignored.

"On October 1 we became aware of the movement of a group, which included members of Riasat Al-Istikhbarat Al-Amah (Saudi Arabia's General Intelligence) to Istanbul, and it was pretty clear what their aim was.

"Through channels, we warned that this was not a good idea. Subsequent events show that our warning was ignored."

Mattis calls for transparent probe in Khashoggi killing

US defence secretary, James Mattis, said that he had met Saudi Arabia's foreign minister and called for a transparent investigation into the killing of Khashoggi.

Mattis said he met Saudi Minister of Foreign Affairs Adel al-Jubeir during a conference in Bahrain on Saturday and discussed the killing.

"We discussed it. You know the same thing we talked about, the need for transparency, full and complete investigation," Mattis told a small group of reporters travelling to Prague with him.

"(There was) full agreement from Foreign Minister Jubeir, no reservations at all, he said we need to know what happened and it was very collaborative, in agreement," Mattis added.

Saturday, October 27

France's Macron calls for sanctions over Khashoggi killing

French President Emmanuel Macron has called for sanctions on those responsible for Khashoggi's murder.

"For me, things are clear. Firstly, some of facts have been established. We must fully investigate the nature of these facts, and who's responsible," he told reporters on the sidelines of a four-way Syria summit in Istanbul, also attended by the leaders of Turkey, Germany and Russia.

"Sanctions must be taken on this basis and these sanctions must be coherent and complete, and be extremely concrete and proportional," added Macron.

"It will depend on the facts as they are established and the sanctions will be taken at a European level, as we usually do, so that there is true coordination."

Merkel and Macron to seek joint EU position on Saudi arms sales 

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron have agreed to find a common European Union position on arms sales to Saudi Arabia, according to Germany's leader.

"We agreed that when we have more clarity, and we are counting on that, when we know who was behind this then we will try to find a unified European solution or reaction from all member states of the European Union to show that we negotiate on the basis of common values," Merkel told reporters in Istanbul.

The chancellor has promised to halt all German arms exports to the kingdom until the killing of Khashoggi is explained.

Turkey's Erdogan demands more answers in Khashoggi case

Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan says he has shared details of the Khashoggi case in bilateral talks during a four-way summit on Syria with the leaders of Russia, France and Germany.

Speaking at a joint news conference following a summit in Istanbul, Erdogan said Riyadh needed to say who sent to Turkey the 18 people believed to be responsible for the journalist's killing.

He also said Ankara valued the conclusion of discussions between Turkish and Saudi prosecutors, who are due to meet on Sunday.

Macron, Merkel back Europe coordination on arms sales to Saudi Arabia

France and Germany's leaders have said they want a "coordinated" European position for sanctions on arms sales to Saudi Arabia.

This came after French President Emmanuel Macron implied on Friday that German Chancellor Angela Merkel's government was engaging in "pure demagoguery" by halting arms sales to Riyadh.

On the sidelines of a Syria summit in Istanbul, the two leaders had a "peaceful exchange", the Elysee palace said, and agreed not to announce their next positions on the issue without first coordinating "at the European level".

Saudi FM: Khashoggi issue has become 'hysterical'

Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir has criticised the global outcry surrounding Khashoggi's killing as "hysterical" and rejected Turkey's demand to extradite the suspects.

"The issue has become fairly hysterical," Jubeir said, adding that investigations take time and facts should be determined as inquiries continue.


READ MORE: Khashoggi case: All previous updates


Answering questions from journalists at a regional summit in Bahrain, Jubeir described Saudi Arabia's relationship with the United States as "ironclad", despite earlier comments from US Secretary of State James Mattis that the killing "undermines regional stability".

Saudi FM: Khashoggi murder suspects will not be extradited

Riyadh dismissed Ankara's calls to extradite 18 Saudis wanted for the murder of Khashoggi.

"The individuals are Saudi nationals. They're detained in Saudi Arabia, and the investigation is in Saudi Arabia, and they will be prosecuted in Saudi Arabia," Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir told a regional defence forum in Bahrain.

He was responding to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan who on Friday renewed his call for the 18 men to be extradited for trial in Turkey.

Mattis: Khashoggi killing 'undermines regional stability'

US Defence Secretary James Mattis said that Khashoggi's murder "undermines regional stability" and that the US intends to take further action in response.

Speaking to an audience of international officials in Bahrain, Mattis avoided mentioning Saudi Arabia in connection with the murder but did say that US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo had already revoked some Saudi visas and "will be taking additional measures".

"With our collective interests in peace and unwavering respect for human rights in mind, the murder of Jamal Khashoggi in a diplomatic facility must concern us all," he said.

He added that "our respect for the Saudi people is undiminished" but that respect "must come with transparency and trust".

Mattis also argued that Russia could not replace US commitment to the Middle East, saying that Moscow lacked essential moral principles, and renewed criticism of Iran's "outlaw regime".

Friday, October 26

France's Macron says Khashoggi killing no reason to halt arms sales to Saudi

French President Emmanuel Macron has dismissed calls by several European countries to suspend arms sales to Saudi Arabia following Khashoggi's murder, calling them "pure demagoguery".

Any sanctions should target "a field of activity ... or individuals or interests who have been shown to have had something to do with the murder of Mr Khashoggi", Macron told a news conference in Slovakia's capital, Bratislava, adding "it's pure demagoguery to say that we should stop selling arms".

"That has nothing to do with the Khashoggi affair. That is linked to the situation in Yemen [where Saudi Arabia is fighting Houthi rebels], which requires a very close follow-up".

He added that any sanctions following Khashoggi's killing should be imposed at a European level "once the facts have been established".

Khashoggi's fiancee: Why I declined Trump's invitation

The fiancee of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi has called for those responsible for his murder to be brought to justice, adding that she declined an invitation by US President Donald Trump to visit the White House.

Hatice Cengiz, a Turkish national, made the comments in an emotional interview with broadcaster Haberturk on Friday, her first TV appearance since Khashoggi's killing inside the kingdom's consulate in Istanbul more than three weeks ago.

"I demand that all those involved in this savagery from the highest to the lowest levels are punished and brought to justice," she said.

In her interview with the Turkish broadcaster, Cengiz said Trump has invited her to visit the White House but said she would not go until the US was sincere in its efforts to uncover the truth behind Khashoggi's killing.

Referring to Trump's invitation, she said: "I perceived it as a statement to win public favour".

Turkey seeks extradition of 18 Saudi suspects

Turkish prosecutors plan to seek the extradition of 18 suspects over the killing of Khashoggi.

Anadolu Agency said on Friday the Istanbul chief prosecutor's office submitted its request to Turkey's justice ministry, adding that the foreign ministry would formally request the extraditions.

"The reasoning behind the extradition request is that Jamal Khashoggi was murdered in Turkey by Saudi nationals who traveled to Turkey for this specific purpose," a senior Turkish official said.

"It is clear that the judicial system in Turkey is better equipped to genuinely serve the cause of justice in this case," the official added.

"The court proceedings in Turkey will be open to international observers in order to ensure the greatest level of transparency."

Friday, October 26

Erdogan: Turkey has more evidence of killing

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that Ankara has more documents and information, which it will reveal "when the time is right".

During a speech to provincial members of his AK Party in the Turkish capital, Erdogan called on Saudi Arabia to reveal who gave the order for the dissident journalist to be killed.

He also announced that the chief Saudi prosecutor will be arriving in Istanbul on Sunday to meet with his Turkish counterpart as part of the investigation into Khashoggi's murder.

Erdogan added that Khashoggi's killer is likely to be among the 18 men arrested by Riyadh.

"There is no other explanation, the perpetrator is among these 18 people and if it isn't then you have to explain who is the local collaborator," he said.

During the speech, Erdogan also called on the Saudis to hand over the men arrested in connection with the murder to Turkish authorities. 

"If you are determined to lift this shroud of mystery, then this is the key point of our collaboration," he said.

Mehmet Celik, a journalist from Daily Sabah, a pro-government English language newspaper in Turkey, said Erdogan had taken a more forceful position in the speech than previously. 

"I think this is one of the harsher remarks Erdogan made on the case and he named both King Salman and Mohammed bin Salman, the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia. 

"I think the [tone] and the language he used was significant in today's speech, he was definitely harsher, he said the explanations made so far by Saudi Arabia were "childish" and he demanded more concrete and consistent answers from Saudi Arabia," said Celik.

Search for Khashoggi's body

Kremlin: No reason to doubt Saudi statements

Russia said it believes Saudi royals were not involved in Khashoggi's murder after Russian President Vladimir Putin discussed the case with Saudi King Salman.

Dmitry Peskov, a Kremlin spokesman, called a journalist's question on whether Moscow fully believes that the royals had no part in the murder "inappropriate".

"There's an official statement from the king, there's an official statement from the crown prince and no one should have any grounds not to believe them," Peskov said during a conference call on Friday.

Putin spoke to King Salman by telephone on Thursday to discuss "the situation around the case of Khashoggi", according to a Kremlin statement. 

In the wake of the Khashoggi controversy, a number of international leaders as well as prominent CEOs pulled out of an investment summit in Riyadh. 

Turkish foreign minister speaks with Saudi counterpart 

Turkey's Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu has had a telephone call with his Saudi counterpart Adel al-Jubeir, a Turkish foreign ministry source said on Friday.

No information has so far been revealed about the content of the call. 

Germany welcomes plan for joint EU position on Saudi arms deals

Germany's Economy Minister Peter Altmaier said he welcomed Austria's proposal for a joint European position on arm exports to Saudi Arabia.

Altmaier made the comments in an interview with German broadcaster Deutschlandfunk (DLF) on Friday.

The German government has agreed not to deliver weapons to the kingdom at the moment, he said in an interview during a visit to Turkey, adding that the effect of that decision would be stronger if European countries adopted a common position.

US praises Saudi move to lift travel ban on Khashoggi's son

The son of slain journalist Jamal Khashoggi, Salah, arrived in the United States after Saudi Arabia lifted a travel ban.

A State Department spokesperson said the US welcomed the decision by Riyadh to allow the dual Saudi-American citizen to go.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo discussed Salah's status during his recent visit to the kingdom, spokesman Robert Palladino told reporters.

Palladino said Pompeo "made it clear to Saudi leaders that he wanted Salah Khashoggi to return to the United States, and we are pleased that he is now able to do so".

The destination of Salah and his family was not known, but his late father lived in the Washington area.

The Saudi leadership drew sharp condemnation this week for staging a photo-op showing a clearly uncomfortable Salah shaking hands with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who has been accused of orchestrating Khashoggi's murder.

UN: Khashoggi was victim of 'extrajudicial execution'

The United Nations special rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions said Khashoggi's killing bears the hallmark of an extrajudicial execution.

"What we know is sufficient to suggest very strongly that Mr Khashoggi was the victim of an extrajudicial execution and that the Saudi Arabia government is implicated in one way or another," Agnes Callamard said.

Callamard called for an international investigation into Khashoggi's murder earlier in the day at a UN session in New York City.

Faisal Fahad, the Saudi representative on the UN committee, said Callamard had overstepped her remit with her comments. "Kindly do not give us any personal opinions in this official meeting," he said.

 CIA director briefs Trump on Turkey evidence

CIA chief Gina Haspel returned from Turkey and briefed US President Donald Trump on her findings in the Khashoggi killing, the US State Department said.

"The president received a briefing from Director Haspel this morning following her return from Turkey. She briefed the president on their [Turks'] findings and her discussions," spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said in a statement.

The Washington Post, which Khashoggi contributed to as a columnist, has reported that Haspel listened to "compelling" audio recordings from Turkey's government that captured the killing of the Saudi writer.

Khashoggi Friends Association holds global protest demanding justice

Supporters of Jamal Khashoggi gathered in cities around the world calling for those responsible for his murder to be held accountable.

In Istanbul, a man wearing a mask of Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, with fake blood on his hands, stood outside the consulate where he was killed more than three weeks ago.

The demonstrations were organised by a group calling itself the Khashoggi Friends Association, which is demanding justice for his murder.

Protests were also held in London, Paris, and Washington, DC.

The event was not just a call for accountability for Khashoggi's death, it was also an appeal to leaders in the Middle East to respect freedom of speech, highlighting "journalism is not a crime".

Thursday, October 25

Reports: Khashoggi's son has left Saudi Arabia

The Reuters news agency is reporting that Salah, one of the sons of slain jounalist Jamal Khashoggi, has left Saudi Arabia after reportedly being under a travel ban since his father began writing critically about Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in columns for The Washington Post.

Sarah Leah Whitson, the executive director for the Middle East and North Africa Division at Human Rights Watch tweeted: "Good news for a change: confirming that #JamalKhashoggi son Salah and his family are finally out of Riyadh and on their way to US, travel ban lifted. Too bad Salah had to endure that cruel and bizarre greeting with MBS first."

Saudi satirist and YouTube star defiant after Khashoggi murder

Saudi dissident and satirist Ghanem Almasarir, whose social media mockery of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman gets millions of hits, has said he is undeterred by Jamal Khashoggi's murder.

Speaking at a protest on Wednesday outside the Saudi embassy in London, Almasarir said Khashoggi's slaying had shown the wider world a darker side to the power wielded by Prince Mohammed.

"If they are not held accountable, they will continue to do it," the 38-year-old said, adding that many Saudi dissidents living in the UK were "afraid right now to leave their houses".

Saudi public prosecutor says Khashoggi murder premeditated

Saudi Arabia's public prosecutor said the assassination of journalist Jamal Khashoggi inside the kingdom's consulate in Istanbul was "premeditated", Reuters and AFP news agencies reported, citing Saudi state media.

"Information from the Turkish authorities indicates that the act of the suspects in the Khashoggi case was premeditated," the public prosector said in a statement carried by the state-run Saudi Press Agency. 


READ MORE: Khashoggi case: How 'loyal' Arab media echoed the Saudi line


"The public prosecution continues its investigation with suspects ... to complete the court of justice."

Prosecutors are interrogating suspects on the basis of information provided by a joint Saudi-Turkish task force, the report said.

MBS attends intelligence meeting: Saudi Press Agency

Saudi Arabia's state-run Saudi Press Agency said on Thursday that Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has attended the first meeting of a committee tasked with restructuring the kingdom's intelligence services after Khashoggi's killing. 

Turkish FM: Ankara won't take Khashoggi's case to international court

Turkey's foreign minister said that Turkey had no intention of taking Khashoggi's case to an international court, but would share information if the court launched its own investigation.

Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Thursday that Ankara is taking all necessary steps to clear up the mystery surrounding what happened to Khashoggi and is cooperating with everyone who wants to cooperate, including Saudi Arabia.

He also reiterated that everyone involved in the killing should be investigated and tried to Turkey, while speaking at a news conference with Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki. 

Ex-CIA chief: MBS would have known about Khashoggi killing beforehand

Former CIA Director John Brennan has said he has "no doubt" that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman would have had prior knowledge of any plans to kill Khashoggi.

Speaking at a live event on Wednesday, Brennan joined the international chorus of condemnation of the murder.

"Whether or not [Bin Salman] authorised the dismemberment, the horrific and brutal killing and torture of [Khashoggi] and the reported dismembering of his body, I don't know. But I have no doubt in my mind that MBS was fully aware of what was ultimately going to happen to Jamal Khashoggi and had approved it," he said.

CIA chief heard murder audiotape on Turkey trip: report

CIA Director Gina Haspel is flying back to Washington, DC, from Turkey after reportedly listening to an audio recording that captured Khashoggi's killing, The Washington Post reported.

Quoting people familiar with her meetings with Turkish officials, the newspaper said Haspel heard the "compelling" recordings while on a visit to Turkey this week. Turkish media reports also suggested the CIA boss heard recordings documenting Khashoggi's death.

If confirmed, the recording gives a key American official access to the evidence used by Turkey to accuse Saudi Arabia of premeditated murder, and puts pressure on the US to hold the Saudi leadership to account for the killing of the Post's contributing columnist.


READ MORE: Saudi crown prince promises justice in Khashoggi murder case


"This puts the ball firmly in Washington's court," the newspaper quoted Bruce Riedel, a former CIA official and scholar at the Brookings Institution, as saying.

"Not only will there be more pressure now from the media but Congress will say, 'Gina, we would love to have you come visit and you can tell us exactly what you heard.'"

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MBS), the country's de facto leader, has denied having knowledge of the alleged assassination mission and on Wednesday promised to bring those responsible to justice.

He called the killing of Khashoggi a "heinous crime".

It remains unclear if the powerful crown prince will allow a legitimate probe, since he's been accused of a direct role in Khashoggi's murder.

"How should a real investigation in Saudi Arabia work when one of the main suspects is the crown prince MBS?" a Turkish senior official was quoted by the Post as saying.

"He is one of the suspects. Members of his royal guard were part of the killing squad. The US nor the rest of the world should really accept this," the official told the newspaper on condition of anonymity.

US lawmakers propose bill to ban arms sales to Saudi Arabia

A bipartisan group of lawmakers introduced a bill in the US House of Representatives that would stop most US arms sales to Saudi Arabia in response to Khashoggi's killing.

The US government and American defence industry are scrambling to save the few actual deals in a much-touted $110bn weapons deal for Saudi Arabia as concerns rise about the role of the kingdom's leadership in the murder.

The bill includes a prohibition on security assistance, intelligence, training and equipment, but does not extend to activities related to safeguarding US diplomatic posts or personnel.

The bill said US President Donald Trump could request exceptions to the arms sale ban if he also submitted a report on a US investigation into anyone involved in "the murder of journalist and United States permanent resident Jamal Khashoggi".

Saudi government funds won't pay for new FIFA events

Facing scrutiny over links to Saudi Arabia, FIFA says new competitions that will bring in $25bn will not be funded directly by any nation.

FIFA President Gianni Infantino's meetings with Saudi King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman over the last year raised questions about the kingdom's involvement in the overhaul of international football competitions for national teams and clubs.

Seven months after Infantino offered limited details of the financial proposition, FIFA council members have been told of principles that will be "fully adhered to in any potential future agreement" with investors in the Club World Cup and worldwide Nations League, according to documents seen by AP news agency.

"FIFA would not enter into a joint venture for this purpose, whether directly or indirectly, with sovereign wealth funds of individual states," the documents state, which does not say anything about investment from private entities linked to nation states.

FIFA is distancing itself from Infantino's comment when asked at a media briefing in June whether the Saudis were backers of the project.

"Whoever invests in sport generally, I think, is welcome provided we do the things in an appropriate way," Infantino said at the time.

Proposals have stalled because of opposition within the council to Infantino's secrecy over the financial backers.

"Football is not for sale," UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin, who is also a FIFA vice president, said in May. UEFA is opposed to the new Club World Cup proposal.

"I cannot accept that some people, some of our colleagues, who are blinded by the pursuit of profit are considering to sell the soul of football tournaments to nebulous private funds," Ceferin added.

Japanese conglomerate SoftBank Group Corp, which is part of the group seeking a joint venture with FIFA to sell the rights to the new competitions, has received $45bn from Saudi Arabia's sovereign wealth fund for technology investments.

Investments with Saudi Arabia have become increasingly problematic for organisations since Saudi officials were accused of killing Khashoggi.

Saudi crown prince jokes Lebanon PM 'not kidnapped'

Saudi Arabia's crown prince joked about allegations that Lebanon's premier-designate Saad Hariri was detained in the kingdom last year, saying he hoped his current visit does not spark "abduction" rumours.

Hariri "will be staying in the kingdom for two more days, so I hope there are no rumours of his abduction", Prince Mohammed bin Salman said while addressing the Future Investment Initiative forum in Riyadh.

He joked Hariri was free to leave after attending the three-day conference that ends Thursday.

The prince burst out laughing and shook hands with a smiling Hariri, who sat next to him on stage, as the audience also erupted in laughter.

In November last year, Hariri announced he was stepping down in a televised address from the Saudi capital, causing observers to speculate he was being held against his will.

After French mediation, he rescinded his resignation the following month. Saudi Arabia has denied intimidating Hariri into quitting his post.

Hariri, a dual Saudi citizen, has thrown his support behind bin Salman. Saudi Arabia has long been a key ally of Hariri, while Riyadh's regional foe Iran backs Lebanese Shia movement Hezbollah.

Wednesday, October 24

MBS says Khashoggi case painful, justice will prevail

Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman on Wednesday said the case of the slain Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi was "painful", and "justice will prevail".

Calling Khashoggi's murder a "heinous crime that cannot be justified", the powerful crown prince said all culprits will be punished, and Saudi Arabia and Turkey will work together "to reach results".

He said the killing of the dissident journalist will not "drive a wedge" between the kingdom and Turkey. "We will cooperate with Turkey to discover the truth behind Khashoggi's killing," the Saudi crown prince said.

Salman broke his silence on the October 2 killing while addressing the Future Investment Initiative in Riyadh, the summit now overshadowed by the Khashoggi case.

May says Saudi account of Khashoggi death lacks credibility

British Prime Minister Theresa May told Saudi Arabia's King Salman on Wednesday that his country's explanation for the death of journalist Jamal Khashoggi in Turkey lacked credibility, her office said.

"The Prime Minister said the current explanation lacks credibility so there remains an urgent need to establish exactly what happened," a Downing Street spokesperson said in a readout of a call between May and King Salman.

"She strongly urged Saudi Arabia to cooperate with the Turkish investigation and to be transparent about the results. It is important that the full facts are established."

Macron warns of possible sanctions against Khashoggi murderers

French President Emmanuel Macron on Wednesday said he had told King Salman of Saudi Arabia that France, in coordination with partners, could take action against those held responsible for the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Macron expressed profound outrage during a phone conversation with Salman, the French presidency said in a statement, adding the president had asked the King that the circumstances around Khashoggi's death be fully disclosed.

MBS identifies Russia, China, Japan and France as 'best friends'

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has opened a meeting with Russian, Chinese, Japanese and French businessmen, who attended an economic forum in Riyadh despite the Khashoggi murder scandal, with the words: "Now we know who our best friends are, and who our best enemies are."

The remarks were quoted to Russia's Ria Novosti news agency by Mikhail Piotrovsky, the director of the State Hermitage Museum, who was witnessed the meeting. 

Erdogan, MBS discuss 'joint steps' to shed light on Khashoggi case

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Wednesday spoke on the phone with Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman for the first time since the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, a presidential source said.

The two discussed "the issue of joint efforts and the steps that need to be taken in order to shed light on the Jamal Khashoggi murder in all its aspects", the source added.

Pompeo: US wants 'perfect clarity' on Khashoggi killing

The United States wants perfect clarity on exactly what happened in the death of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in an internal email sent widely to US State Department employees.

"We are already seeing steps from Saudi Arabia reflecting serious accountability, but we won't be satisfied until we get perfect clarity on exactly what transpired," Pompeo said in a "Miles with Mike" email sent to US State Department employees on Tuesday evening and reviewed by Reuters news agency on Wednesday.

The email described his trip to Saudi Arabia and Turkey.

Spain to deliver arms to Riyadh despite Khashoggi's killing

Spain's Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez has said his government will fulfill past arms sales contracts with Saudi Arabia, despite his condemnation of the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Sanchez has told fellow lawmakers on Wednesday that protecting jobs in southern Spain was also central to his decision last month to go ahead with a controversial bomb shipment to Saudi Arabia.

Spain has said that the $2.1bn purchase by Saudi Arabia for five navy ships was put at risk when the government pondered cancelling the shipment of 400 precision bombs purchased by Riyadh in 2015.

Sanchez has not clarified what his plans are regarding future purchases by the long-time commercial ally.

Turkey receives permission to search a well at Saudi consulate

Turkish police have been granted permission to search a well in the garden of the Saudi consulate in Istanbul and will conduct inspections, Reuters news agency reported, citing Turkish broadcaster NTV.

Saudi officials had earlier refused to allow a search.

Authorities have previously carried out inspections at the consulate and consul general's residence as part of their investigation into the assassination of Khashoggi.

After repeated denials, Saudi Arabia admitted at the weekend that the journalist had been killed at its Istanbul consulate following a "fist-fight". The kingdom's officials did not, however, make any mention of where the 59-year-old's body was.

Britain to stop suspects in Khashoggi death from entering UK

British Prime Minister Theresa May said the UK will revoke the visas of all Saudi Arabian nationals suspected of involvement in the Khashoggi killing in a bid to prevent them from entering the country.

The UK leader also said she expects to speak to Saudi Arabia's King Salman later on Wednesday.

"The Home Secretary is taking action against all suspects to prevent them entering the UK, and if these individuals currently have visas, those visas will be revoked today," May told the British parliament.

"There does remain an urgent need to establish exactly what has happened in relation to this," she added.

May's announcement came after the US State Department said twenty-one Saudis will have their US visas revoked or be made ineligible for US visas over the kingdom's killing of the journalist.

Erdogan: Some are 'uncomfortable' with evidence

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said some are "uncomfortable" with Ankara sharing evidence concerning the ongoing investigation into Khashoggi's killing, without elaborating on who.

Speaking at a symposium in the Turkish capital, Ankara, Erdogan also said Turkey will not allow those responsible for the Saudi journalist's assassination inside the kingdom's consulate in Istanbul to avoid justice.

On Wednesday, Turkey's Justice Minister Abdulhamit Gul said Turkish prosecutors could send a request for the extradition of the Saudi's Consul General to Turkey, who left the country shortly after Khashoggi was killed at the kingdom's consulate in Istanbul, she added.

France waiting for further facts on Khashoggi killing

France will not take any "hasty decision" on the future of its strategic relationship with Saudi Arabia until the facts around the death of journalist Jamal Khashoggi are clear, a source in President Emmanuel Macron's Elysee Palace office told Reuters news agency.

"If decisions are to be taken in the future, they will be taken but based on facts that have been clarified and responsibilities that have been clearly established," the source said.

MBS to address 'Davos in the Desert' forum

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman is scheduled to speak at the Future Investment Initiative, an economic forum nicknamed 'Davos in the Desert', this afternoon.

It is unclear whether he will address the killing of Khashoggi.

His appearance at the event came as US President Donald Trump suggested for the first time that the Crown Prince may have been involved with the assassination of Khashoggi.

In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, Trump said: "Well, the prince is running things over there more so at this stage. He's running things and so if anybody were going to be [involved], it would be him."

Riyadh operating under Washington's protection, Rouhani says

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said Saudi Arabia would not have assassinated Khashoggi without protection from officials in Washington, Iran's state-run Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA) reported.

"No one would imagine that in today's world and a new century that we would witness such an organised murder and a system would plan out such a heinous murder," Rouhani said, according to IRNA.

"I don't think that a country would dare commit such a crime without the protection of America," he added.

Saudi officials admit to body double scheme: Report

Saudi officials have acknowledged a body double was part of an operation aimed at extracting journalist Jamal Khashoggi from the kingdom's consulate in Istanbul for questioning at a "safe house", AP news agency reported.


READ MORE: Twitter storm after Khashoggi's son meets Saudi crown prince


Speaking to AP on condition of anonymity, two Saudi authorities said a team was sent to Turkey on a directive issued by King Salman's predecessor, King Abdullah, to bring Saudi dissidents abroad back to the kingdom so they could participate in a "national dialogue" over the country's future.

Asked why such a team would include a forensics expert and a body double, the Saudi officials said had the safe house option been used, the plan was for the forensic expert to wipe clean evidence that the 59-year-old had been at the consulate and for the body double to leave the facility to give the false impression that Khashoggi had left on his own.

Instead, the two officials said, the operation with Khashoggi turned violent after the writer yelled for help upon being told he would be taken to a safe house.

That's when an unidentified person on the team applied a chokehold, which the officials said was intended only to keep Khashoggi quiet - but ended up killing him instead.

The officials said nine members of the 15-strong team who were inside the consulate at the time then panicked and made plans with a local Turkish "collaborator" to remove the body. One official said the body was rolled up in some sort of material and taken from the consulate by the collaborator.

Neither official could account for Turkish claims that Khashoggi's body was dismembered with a bone saw inside the building.

US to bar 21 Saudis from entering

Twenty-one Saudis will have their US visas revoked or be made ineligible for US visas over the killing of Khashoggi, US State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said.

The vast majority of the 21 have US visas, a US State Department official said.

Trump implies MBS may be involved

Mohammed bin Salman might have taken part in the operation to assassinate Khashoggi, US President Donald Trump suggested for the first time.

In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, Trump was asked about the powerful crown prince's possible involvement in the murder.

"Well, the prince is running things over there more so at this stage. He's running things and so if anybody were going to be, it would be him," the president responded.

Trump has previously said he believed bin Salman's denials of playing a role in Khashoggi's murder.

Trump told the newspaper he questioned the crown prince intensely on Khashoggi's killing "in a couple of different ways".

"My first question to him was, 'Did you know anything about it in terms of the initial planning?'"

Bin Salman replied he didn't, Trump said.

"I said, 'Where did it start?' And he said it started at lower levels."

Asked if he believed the crown prince's latest denial, the American president paused: "I want to believe them. I really want to believe them."

Bessma Momani, a senior fellow at the Stimson Center in Washington, DC, called Trump's comments on bin Salman "damning".

"He's made it very clear that he thinks there's a cover-up, which I think is very interesting because it flies in the face of everything the Saudis have been saying from the beginning in the three-week saga that's been going on," Momani said.

Twitter storm after Khashoggi's son meets MBS

Social media lit up early Wednesday with criticism of Saudi Arabia's condolence photo showing a pained look on Khashoggi's son's face as he shook hands with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

King Salman and the crown prince received Khashoggi's son Salah and his brother Sahel at the Yamama Palace in Riyadh, where the two royals expressed their condolences.

Fadi Al-Qadi, a Middle East human rights advocate and commentator, denounced the photo-op as "ruthless".

Others also chimed in on Twitter.

"I think many people online looking at this on social media are saying, you know, this is the face of a son who thinks he's shaking the hand of the man who killed his father," analyst Chris Doyle said. 

"It's another example in this situation where some of the Saudi attempts to win the public relations war is failing."

For earlier updates, click here


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