Turkish media have reported that staff at Saudi Arabia’s consulate in Istanbul attempted to dismantle security cameras to help cover up the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, Al Jazeera reported.
Khashoggi entered the building on October 2 to obtain documentation certifying he had divorced his ex-wife. He was not seen since.
Saudi Arabia has admitted that the Saudi critic died in a premeditated murder inside its Istanbul consulate – after weeks of consistent denials that it had anything to do with his disappearance.
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Turkish media have reported Khashoggi was killed and dismembered based on recordings from the consulate. They say he died at the hands of a 15-member assassination squad from Saudi Arabia.
Sabah newspaper reported on Tuesday that the Saudis tried to rip out the camera inside the consulate on October 2, the day when Khashoggi was reportedly killed.
They also tried to tamper with cameras at the police security booth outside the building.
According to the report, on October 6, at 1 am local time, a consulate member staff went into the police security post outside the Saudi consulate to access the video system.
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Sabah reported that the staff member put in a digital lock code into the system, which did not dismantle any cameras, rather the code was to prevent access to any videos showing movement at the entrance, including Khashoggi’s arrival at the consulate.
Meanwhile, Mevlut Cavusoglu, the Turkish foreign minister, restated on a visit to Japan on Tuesday that it is “obvious” that the 15-member team from Saudi Arabia had arrived in Istanbul with instructions to kill Khashoggi.
However, Turkey has not been able to receive an answer from Saudi Arabia as to who specifically ordered Khashoggi’s murder.
“We have to find out who gave these instructions. This is the simple question that we have put to the Saudis as well. We made it very public. It’s an ongoing investigation,” Cavusoglu said.
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“Saudis proposed to have a joint working group and we accepted that but this working group should be a result-oriented one.”
Cavusoglu added that Turkey has further evidence regarding Khashoggi’s killing which they have yet to share with the public and that details of his case will continue to be reported to the public until the investigation is complete.