Saudis welcome joint Turkey probe into missing journalist Jamal Khashoggi

WION Web Team Riyadh Saudi Arabia Oct 12, 2018, 11.08 PM(IST)

Jamal Khashoggi. Photograph:( Reuters )

Story highlights

A Saudi official source said it was "a positive move" that Turkey had agreed to a Saudi request to form "a bilateral expert-level Joint Action Team to disclose the merits of the Saudi national Jamal bin Ahmed Hamza Khashoggi's disappearance," SPA said. 

Saudi Arabia has welcomed a joint investigation with Turkey into the disappearance of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

The country had earlier requested Turkey to form a bilateral level team to investigate the murder of Khashoggi.

A Saudi official source said it was "a positive move" that Turkey had agreed to a Saudi request to form "a bilateral expert-level Joint Action Team to disclose the merits of the Saudi national Jamal bin Ahmed Hamza Khashoggi's disappearance," SPA said. 

According to media reports, Turkey possesses audio and video recordings that prove the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi took place inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul.

A media report quoted a source as saying that the evidence Turkey has, shows signs of assault and struggle inside the consulate.

Senior journalist Khashoggi, 59, who is a strong critic of the Saudi establishment had taken US citizenship after leaving his country and had written several articles against Saudi Arabia's repressive policies for the Washington Post.

The New York Times revealed on Wednesday that a group of 15 men flew down to Turkey in a private jet in order to kill Khashoggi inside the Saudi consulate in Turkey. The Turkish government openly accused Saudi Arabia of colluding to kill the journalist.

The journalist had entered the Saudi consulate to submit documents seeking a divorce from his wife living in Saudi Arabia so that he could remarry again in Turkey.

Saudi Arabia has denied any hand in Khashoggi's disappearance asserting that he walked out of the consulate from the back door. However, his fiance, Hatice Cengiz, who accompanied him to the consulate on October 2 said he never came out of the consulate as she waited outside.

Turkey had earlier asked Saudi Arabia to present evidence to prove that the missing journalist had left the consulate.

Turkey on Thursday denied a claim by US President Donald Trump that American investigators were collectively working with both Ankara and Riyadh to probe the disappearance of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

(With inputs from agencies)