Friday 1 April 2022 - 22:51

Turkish Prosecutor Requests to Move Trial for Jamal Khashoggi’s Murder to Saudi Arabia

Story Code : 986885
Turkish Prosecutor Requests to Move Trial for Jamal Khashoggi’s Murder to Saudi Arabia
Khashoggi, 59, was murdered on October 2, 2018, after he entered the Saudi consulate in Istanbul to obtain a document stating that he was divorced so that he could marry his fiancée, Hatice Cengiz, a Turkish citizen.

Recording and other evidence gathered by Turkish authorities revealed how a team of Saudi agents subdued, killed and then dismembered the journalist inside the diplomatic mission.

Saudi Arabia initially issued conflicting stories about Khashoggi’s disappearance, but eventually said that he was killed in a “rogue” operation. Saudi authorities had reportedly lured the ill-fated journalist into the consulate with guarantees of his safety while sending in a professional death squad.

Khashoggi’s murder triggered a global outcry and put pressure on Saudi Arabia's de facto ruler Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MbS), who according to US intelligence had approved the operation to kill or capture his critic.

Riyadh, however, flatly denied any involvement by MbS and rejected the report's findings.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has said the murder had been ordered at the “highest levels” of the Saudi government, an accusation that has already strained the relations between the two countries and led to an unofficial Saudi boycott of Turkish goods, which cut Ankara's exports to Riyadh by 90 percent.

The request by the Turkish prosecutor comes as Turkey seeks to mend ties with Saudi Arabia.

On Thursday, the Istanbul court where 26 Saudi suspects have been on trial in absentia for nearly two years said that it would ask for the Justice Ministry's opinion on the request to transfer proceedings, and set the next hearing for April 7.