Saudi Arabia admitted on Friday that Jamal Khashoggi was murdered in the consulate in Turkey, saying the Washington Post journalist was killed in a “fist fight.”
The Turkish government now vows to reveal the truth about how he was killed, the Sun reported.
Khashoggi disappeared after entering the Saudi consulate on October 2 seeking paperwork he needed to marry his girlfriend. Reports from Turkish intelligence indicated that he was murdered by a team of Saudi agents who flew to Turkey specifically to kill him, with the agents dismembering Khashoggi while he was still alive before killing him, all within a span of seven minutes.
Amid growing international pressure, the Saudi government finally admitted involvement and said that a group of 18 people had been arrested, but maintained that Khashoggi was killed in a fight. In a statement on Saturday, Turkish government official Omer Celik told the Anadolu news agency that this was not the case.
“Turkey will reveal whatever had happened,” Celik said. “Nobody should ever doubt about it. We are not accusing anyone in advance but we don’t accept anything to remain covered [up].”
Turkish officials reportedly have grisly recordings of Khashoggi’s killing, which showed the team working with discipline and efficiency as his body was dismembered. Reports indicate that a forensic pathologist who led the dismemberment put on headphones to listen to music while Khashoggi was decapitated and dismembered, and advised the other members of the team to do the same.
The Saudi government still has not revealed what happened to Khashoggi’s body after his murder, and friends have now demanded that Riyadh produce his remains so he can be laid to rest, CNN reported. A source close to the Saudi Royal Palace told CNN that top officials in Saudi Arabia do not know where Khashoggi’s body was taken after his murder, saying it was turned over to local allies and has disappeared. Turkish officials are now searching Istanbul and outlying areas for his body.
“This is the worst coverup I’ve ever seen … Where is the body? Why did it take seventeen days to come up with this account?” https://t.co/YQ749VE92k
— Marty Baron (@PostBaron) October 20, 2018
With Saudi Arabia’s admission on Friday that it was involved in his death, the pressure to turn over his body is growing.
“Give us Jamal, so we can have a funeral for him,” said Turan Kislakci, the head of the Turkish Arab Media Association and a friend of Khashoggi, in a statement outside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul. “So that all people who care about him, world leaders, can come here to Istanbul for the funeral.”