- A top Turkish prosecutor on Wednesday said Jamal Khashoggi was strangled shortly after entering the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul on October 2.
- The journalist’s body was then dismembered, Istanbul’s chief prosecutor, Irfan Fidan, said.
- It is the most detailed official account of Khashoggi’s killing so far.
Jamal Khashoggi was strangled shortly after entering the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul, and his body was dismembered afterward, a Turkish prosecutor said Wednesday.
Irfan Fidan, the chief prosecutor of Istanbul, made the accusations, for the first time publicly detailing claims that Turkish officials had made anonymously in the weeks since the Saudi journalist disappeared in the consulate.
Khashoggi, a critic of the Saudi government, went missing after entering his country’s consulate in Istanbul on October 2. The kingdom – which has been trying to distance its crown prince from the crisis – has shifted its version of events multiple times.
After first denying knowledge of his whereabouts, Saudi Arabia acknowledged his death 17 days after the disappearance. The kingdom said he had been accidentally killed in a fight. But after weeks of Turkish officials continually leaking details suggesting a murder, Saudi Arabia’s public prosecutor, Saud al-Mojeb, last week acknowledged the evidence suggested the killing was most likely premeditated.
Fidan demanded that his Saudi counterpart detail the whereabouts of Khashoggi’s body. Unnamed Saudi officials previously claimed that Khashoggi’s body was wrapped up in some kind of fabric and given to a local Turkish coconspirator.
He also demanded that the 18 suspects Saudi Arabia arrested over Khashoggi’s killing be sent to Istanbul, the state-run Anadolu Agency reported. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan made the same demand on Monday.
Fidan’s statement came after Mojeb visited Istanbul this week to discuss the kingdom’s investigation into Khashoggi’s death.
An unnamed Turkish official told Agence France-Presse on Wednesday that Saudi officials appeared unwilling to share intelligence over the investigation.
“The Saudi officials seemed primarily interested in finding out what evidence the Turkish authorities had against the perpetrators,” the official said.
“We did not get the impression that they were keen on genuinely cooperating with the investigation,” the person added.
Business Insider has contacted Saudi Arabia’s embassy in Washington, DC, for comment.