Press TV – Turkey says it is in talks with the United Nations regarding an investigation into the gruesome murder of dissident Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi inside the Arab kingdom’s consulate in Istanbul more than two months ago.
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu made the comment at a news conference in the capital Ankara on Tuesday, adding that demands for an international probe “have started coming.”
“Our expectation is actually for none of this to be necessary and for Saudi Arabia to cooperate for those responsible to be found out,” he said.
Last week, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet said an international investigation was required to determine who was responsible for the killing of the ill-fated journalist.
The Turkish Foreign Ministry warned last month that Ankara may seek a formal UN inquiry into the murder case if its dealings with Riyadh came to an impasse.
Khashoggi, 59, a one-time royal insider who had been critical of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman recently, was killed after entering the Saudi diplomatic mission on October 2.
For weeks, Riyadh denied any involvement in Khashoggi’s disappearance but under growing pressure from the international community eventually acknowledged that he was killed and dismembered in a “premeditated murder.”
Turkish authorities believe that a 15-person “hit squad” was sent from Saudi Arabia to Istanbul.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that the order to slay Khashoggi had been issued from “the highest levels” of the Saudi government, suggesting that the crown prince had ordered such a gruesome crime.
However, the Saudi regime has sought to distance the heir to the Saudi throne from the assassination despite emerging evidence alleging otherwise. A report by the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) said it had concluded that bin Salman had been behind the gruesome crime.
A purported transcript of an audio recording of Khashoggi’s killing shared with CNN showed that the dissident journalist’s death had been the execution of a premeditated plan, unlike what Saudi officials initially claimed.
The transcript described the last painful moments of Khashoggi’s life, noting that his screams and gasps could be heard on the tape. It also identified the sounds of saw and cutting as the victim’s body was dismembered.
The killing of Khashoggi, a Washington Post columnist, has strained Riyadh’s relations with the West and battered bin Salman’s image abroad. Saudi Arabia claims that the prince had no prior knowledge of the murder.
The Arab kingdom has been facing international condemnation over the brutal murder.