Turkish Investigators to Search Saudi Consulate in Disappearance of Saudi Journalist

Alleged Saudi Murder of Washington Post Columnist Prompts Calls to Halt U.S. Relations with Regime

A report Monday in the daily newspaper Sabah said investigators were also focused on a convoy of diplomatic vehicles that departed from the consulate on the day Khashoggi vanished.

'I texted a few friends to inform them, and I asked about Jamal at the consular building.

A Turkish official told the New York Times on the condition of anonymity that a team of Saudi agents killed the 59-year-old writer within two hours of his arrival at the consulate, and then dismembered his body with a bone saw they had brought for the goal.

A Turkish police source told the Middle East Eye that officials believe Khashoggi was "brutally tortured, killed and cut into pieces" while inside the consulate.

Turan Kislakci, a friend of Khashoggi and the head of the Turkish-Arab Media Association, said that Turkish officials said the journalist has been brutally murdered.

Back in March, Khashoggi appeared on Al Jazeera's "UpFront" and said there wasn't any room for debate in Saudi Arabia with journalists jailed for questioning its policies.

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.

It was not clear whether the Saudis meant to arrest and interrogate Khashoggi or to kill him, or if the United States warned Khashoggi that he was a target, the source told the newspaper. One was an autopsy expert.

David Rohde, executive editor of The New Yorker tweeted out, "The journalist Jamal Khashoggi had said that the Saudi crown prince, Mohammed bin Salman, has 'no tolerance or willingness to accommodate critics'".

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

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"But I will be at some point", he said Tuesday, without elaborating.

"At this time, I implore President Trump and first lady Melania Trump to help shed light on Jamal's disappearance", Cengiz wrote.

Crown Prince Mohammed's brother and the Saudi ambassador to the US, Khaled, has insisted all the reports about his disappearance or death "are completely false and baseless".

"I don't think I'll be able to go home", he told the BBC, saying that in Saudi Arabia "the people who are arrested are not even dissidents" and saying he wished he had a platform at home to write and speak freely at this time of "great transformation" in his country. "We are fully aligned with the United States on this, with the USA position on this", she said. The planes are owned by Riyadh-based Sky Prime Aviation Services, according to public records. The Post said "a person close to the investigation" shared the image with them. They checked into two hotels near the consulate and booked rooms for three nights. If there was evidence of a crime there, it will have been cleaned up days ago.

He went to the consulate on 2 October to obtain paperwork to marry his Turkish fiancee, Hatice Cengiz, who was reportedly waiting outside the building for him.

It's unclear which camera the footage came from or who operated it.

During a trip to Turkey, he entered the Saudi consulate in Istanbul to get papers ahead of his upcoming marriage, but he hasn't been seen since.

Turkish officials allege he was murdered inside the consulate.

Behind a gate next to the front entrance is a covered auto port, out of the view of cameras.

The Turkish government is looking into Khashoggi's disappearance. A Saudi flag flies outside. "Because if he was alive, Saudis would provide evidence that he is alive", Yasin Aktay, an adviser to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, tells CNN. Turkish employees of the residence had unexpectedly been told not to report for work that day, the newspaper said.

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