Monday, 17 December, 2018

John Bolton: Khashoggi murder tape does not implicate Saudi prince

Erdogan says it is clear the order for Khashoggi's murder came from the top level of Saudi authorities Erdogan says it is clear the order for Khashoggi's murder came from the top level of Saudi authorities
Patty Aguilar | 14 November, 2018, 13:49

The New York Times, while citing three people familiar with a recording of Khashoggi's killing collected by Turkish intelligence, said while he was not mentioned by name, U.S. officials believe "your boss" was a reference to Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

In his comments to reporters, Erdogan said it was clear the killing was planned and that the order came from the top level of Saudi authorities, but that he could not think such a thing of King Salman, for whom he has "limitless respect".

The newspaper also alleged that the person who made the phone call was the crown prince's former bodyguard Maher Abdulaziz Mutreb.

U.S. National security adviser John Bolton adjusts his glasses while speaking to the media during a news briefing following his meetings with Georgian officials in Tbilisi, Georgia, Friday, Oct. 26, 2018.

Luggage carried by a 15-member Saudi team dispatched to Istanbul included scissors, defibrillators and syringes that may have been used against journalist Jamal Khashoggi, who was murdered in the Saudi consulate, a pro-government Turkish daily said on Tuesday.

Although the name of the Crown Prince was not mentioned in the recording, the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) believes that the word "your boss" was a reference to Mohammad bin Salman, as speculations indicate that he is the one who ordered the assassination.

Khashoggi, a Washington Post contributor and United States resident, was murdered after entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 2. Turkey has stopped just short of blaming Prince Mohammed, the 33-year-old who runs the affairs of the kingdom day to day.

Turkish officials have said Khashoggi was strangled nearly immediately upon entering the Saudi consulate in the Turkish city of Istanbul on October 2 in order to obtain papers he needed for his upcoming marriage, and that his body was then dismembered and disposed of.

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Prince Mohamed loosened restrictions on women and sought to prepare the economy for a time after oil but also embroiled his country in a war in Yemen, led a boycott of Qatar and engaged in diplomatic spats with Germany and Canada.

The controversy, and Turkey's success in keeping it on the global news agenda for weeks, has embarrassed foreign investors and hardened stances even among key Saudi allies.

An audio recording of the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi is a "true disaster" that "shocked" the Saudi intelligence officer who heard it, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has said.

In this photo taken on December 15, 2014, Jamal Khashoggi looks on at a press conference in the Bahraini capital Manama. "Our intelligence organization did not hide anything", he said, according to Reuters".

"He said this to my special envoys", Erdogan was quoted as saying. "Eighteen people are under arrest in Saudi Arabia".

Regarding the murder, Turkey has been also sharing information with other countries in order to increase efforts to uncover the details of the murder. "So we have a psychopath sitting in Riyadh controlling the country".

These had led Ankara to conclude from an early stage that the killing was premeditated, despite Saudi Arabia's initial denials of any knowledge or involvement. Turkish police haven't been able to locate the columnist's remains despite extensive searches, and an aide to Erdogan said his body may have been dissolved.

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