Erdogan calls for trial in Istanbul of Khashoggi suspects

Blanche Robertson
October 23, 2018

Erdogan said the Saudis used a "body double" as a decoy after Khashoggi was killed.

The journalist's remains were found in the garden of the Consul General's home in Istanbul, Sky News reported, citing legal and political sources. Critics allege that bin Salman, now crown prince, may have ordered Kahshoggi's killing.

Merkel appeared dubious of Saudi Arabia's claims that Khashoggi died due to a rogue operation gone wrong, telling reporters in Berlin on Sunday, according to Politico, that there was an "urgent need for further clarification".

That comment contradicts Saudi accounts that Khashoggi, a USA permanent resident and Washington Post columnist who had written critically of Saudi Arabia's crown prince, died accidentally in a "fistfight" in the consulate.

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said on Tuesday that the 18 suspects should be tried in Istanbul over Khashoggi murder and called for independent commission to investigate the matter.

The footage obtained by CNN, showed a man of similar age and physique to the Saudi journalist, who was one of 15 operatives who flew to Istanbul the same day Khashoggi arrived at the Saudi consulate.

Saudi Arabia said on Saturday that Khashoggi was involved in "a physical confrontation, which resulted in his death". They say the team cut off his fingers before killing and dismembering the 59-year-old Washington Post columnist, who had written critically about the Crown Prince.

However, Erdogan made no reference to any audio or video recordings, something that would be seriously damaging to the Saudi government.

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"Those partners who are here with us today, to continue their journey with us are certainly going to look back and find out how the lessons have been learned from the incident, but at the same time how committed the Kingdom is to its partners who stay the course".

Selvi said Khashoggi was strangled by a Saudi assassination squad, in a process that took up to eight minutes.

This year's conference contrasts with the 2017 FII which was a star-studded event where Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman was celebrated as a visionary as he talked about the nation's plans to build a futuristic megacity dubbed Neom, to be located on the kingdom's northwestern coast by the Red Sea.

CIA Director Gina Haspel, meanwhile, headed for Turkey, although details of her trip were not immediately clear. "This is being carried out by both Saudi-supported news agencies and (internet) trolls".

Erdogan's speech was previously pitched as revealing the "naked truth" about Khashoggi's slaying.

Where was Khashoggi when he was killed?

Earlier, Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih assured the investment conference that the world's top crude exporter was passing through a "crisis of a sort" but would power ahead with economic reforms.

"We strongly demand and expect that Canadian exports are used in a way that fully respects human rights", Trudeau said in Parliament.

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