Jamal Khashoggi: Erdogan to reveal ‘truth’ about murder

The Turkish president is presenting the first official version of the investigation into the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi. Saudi Arabia could face its worst crisis if the crown prince is linked to the killing.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has vowed to reveal the “naked truth” about the murder of Saudi dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi during a speech to his Justice and Development Party (AKP) on Tuesday.

The Saudi government’s involvement in the journalist’s death has caused an international outcry and prompted Germany to halt arms sales to the country.

Turkey-Saudi rift: Relations between the two Middle Eastern countries were already strained amid disagreements over the conflict in Syria. DW’s Istanbul correspondent Dorian Jones says the Turkish president’s revelations could worsen ties even further: “If Turkey has information linking the crown prince to the murder, the kingdom could face its worst crisis in decades.”

Read more: Jamal Khashoggi’s murder through the lens of Middle Eastern media

A mysterious death: Khashoggi went missing on October 2 after entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul to pick up marriage documents. Turkey said it had a recording that proved the journalist was murdered and dismembered within the consulate. Saudi Arabia initially said Khashoggi had left the consulate after the appointment. But on Saturday, it admittedKhashoggi had been killed in a “rogue operation” and died in a fistfight and that it was investigating the murder.

World skeptical over Saudi claims: German Chancellor Angela Merkel has dismissed the Saudi government’s explanation  as “insufficient” and ordered a temporary pause in arms sales to the country. US President Donald Trump and French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian have also voiced scepticism about the explanation. The director of the US Central Intelligence Agency, Gina Haspel, has arrived in Turkey to help investigate Khashoggi’s death, according to Reuters news agency. 

“Cold blooded’ murder: Khashoggi’s Washington Post editor, Karen Attiah, told DW that the journalist suffered “unbearable oppression” from the Saudi authorities. She said the global response “sends a message to journalists around the world about whether regimes can get away with murdering them in cold blood.”

Who was Khashoggi? The 59-year-old journalist had worked as a government advisor in Saudi Arabia. In recent years, he became a prominent critic of the Saudi government and the kingdom’s 33-year-old crown prince, Mohammed bin Salman. He lived in the United States prior to his death and wrote a monthly column for The Washington Post.

Dw/amp/rt (dpa, AFP)

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