Published: Wed, October 17, 2018
Money | By Ralph Mccoy

Saudi considers admitting Khashoggi died in botched op

Saudi considers admitting Khashoggi died in botched op

Tubaigy began to cut Khashoggi's body up on a table in the study while he was still alive, the Turkish source said. "They had come to kill him", the source said.

Saudi operatives were reportedly told they should listen to music as journalist Jamal Khashoggi was dismembered, an audio recording indicates, according to a new report.

Turkish investigators conducted a nine-hour search at the consulate on Tuesday.

The source confirmed that Saudi Consul General Mohammad al-Otaibi left Istanbul on Tuesday, returning to Riyadh.

Pressure is growing on Saudi Arabia to give a full explanation of what happened to Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said parts of the building had been repainted since Khashoggi, a Saudi native who criticized the crown prince's policies, vanished.

The president also spoke with the crown prince on Tuesday, who he later tweeted had "totally denied any knowledge of what took place in their Turkish Consulate" and said an extensive probe into Khashoggi's disappearance was ongoing.

Graham also implored Saudi Arabia directly to choose a new leader as the crown prince, to him, is "toxic" and "can never be a world leader on the world stage". "If they knew about it, that would be bad", he said, reflecting on the matter to Fox Business.

"We are strong and old allies", the crown prince told Pompeo before reporters were ushered out.

After his talks in Riyadh on Tuesday, Pompeo was expected in Turkey today to meet Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu.

"If this was a state-sanctioned assassination, which it may prove to be, then there will have to be a fundamental rethinking of our relationship vis-a-vis the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia".

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Sun Degang, a Middle East expert at Shanghai International studies University, said that if the U.S. and Saudi Arabia were to part ways, it would be possible for China to develop deeper economies ties with the Arab nation, including using the yuan to trade oil.

The Saudis will likely claim the alleged murder was carried out "without clearance and transparency" and that the "hit squad" of 15 Saudi assassins will be punished, the sources said.

Turkish officials have said they believe he was killed-a claim Saudi Arabia has denied-with the controversy dealing a huge blow to the kingdom's image and efforts by its youthful crown prince to showcase a reform drive.

Earlier in the day, United Nations human rights chief Michelle Bachelet said the "inviolability or immunity" of people or premises granted under the 1963 Vienna Convention on Consular Relations "should be waived immediately".

Bachelet said the "inviolability or immunity" of people or premises granted under the 1963 Vienna Convention on Consular Relations "should be waived immediately".

Overnight, Turkish police completed a search of the consulate after being allowed in by Saudi authorities.

Bachelet stopped short of calling for an global investigation.

Soon after, Pompeo arrived at a royal palace, where he thanked King Salman "for accepting my visit on behalf of President Trump" before the two went into a closed-door meeting.

A Saudi team entered first on Monday, followed roughly an hour later by Turkish forensic police.

Searching another country's consulate - which is considered foreign soil under the Vienna Convention - is an extraordinary measure which reflects the gravity of the diplomatic crisis.

In Istanbul, meanwhile, investigators entered the consulate for their own investigation.

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