Jamal Khashoggi has been pictured in his final hours. Picture: A News
Jamal Khashoggi has been pictured in his final hours. Picture: A News

Body parts of slain journalist ‘found in garden’

THE body parts of slain Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi have reportedly been found and reveal "grisly detail" of how his face was disfigured.

The remains of the journalist were found in the garden of the Consul General's home in Istanbul, Sky News reported, citing legal and political sources.

The development came soon after an address by Turkey's president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who labelled the death of Khashoggi a "savage murder" committed by a Saudi team of assassins who carefully planned the killing.

In that address the president said the remains hadn't been found, and asked: "Why has the body of someone who was officially said to be killed not been found yet?"

Mr Erdogan told the Turkish parliament it was clear it was a premeditated and meticulously planned political assassination, where Saudi officials began plotting against Khashoggi in late September, days ahead of his disappearance after he entered the consulate in Istanbul on October 2.

 

Having promised to reveal the "naked truth" of a Saudi plot to kill the Washington Post columnist, Mr Erdogan said that a team including Saudi generals had flown in to carry out the mission.

Saudi citizen Khashoggi has been a fierce critic of the leadership of Saudi Arabia, and in particular Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

He said the evidence collected so far shows Mr Khashoggi was murdered in "a ferocious manner".

"To try and hide it would be an insult to humanity," Mr Erdogan said in his address that was televised around the world.

"Let's not forget that this building is within the borders of the Republic of Turkey," the President said.

He urged Saudi Arabia to reveal who ordered the "savage murder" at the kingdom's consulate in Istanbul and said the 18 Saudis suspected of carrying it out should be tried in Turkish courts.

Erdogan's comments contradicted Saudi accounts that Khashoggi died accidentally in a "fistfight" in the consulate - and for the first time the president also confirmed that a body double of Khashoggi was used as a decoy after he was killed.

However, he made no reference to any audio or video recordings, something that would be seriously damaging to the Saudi government.

He did not mention Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who some US politicians have speculated ordered the murder - but did speak of Saudi King Salman's "sincerity" in the inquiry so far.

Mr Erdogan vowed Turkey would continue in its pursuit of the truth.

"From the person who gave the order, to the person who carried it out, they must all be brought to account."

He demanded Saudi Arabia reveal who helped the killers - someone he called a "local cooperator" - who supposedly took Khashoggi's remains away.

The president said three people secretly entered Turkey three days before the killing and scouted a forest near Istanbul - suggesting the trio may have been looking for a place to dump the body, according to a Guardian analysis.

His address came after more than two weeks of carefully orchestrated leaks to the media by Turkey that implicated the highest levels of the government of Saudi Arabia in the death of Khashoggi.

The last few hours of Khashoggi's life have been revealed in images published by Turkish media outlets.

 

 

The Saudi journalist can be seen holding hands with Turkish fiancee Hatice Cengiz, as they visit the local marriage office and enter their apartment block in the hours leading up to his fatal visit to the consulate.

In the wake of his death, Ms Cengiz said she has been the subject of abuse from online Saudi trolls who have questioned the authenticity of their relationship.

"A severe smear campaign has been initiated in Saudi Arabia against myself," she told Turkish daily newspaper Sabah on October 11, more than a week after her fiance disappeared. "This is being carried out by both Saudi-supported news agencies and (internet) trolls.

"This is, of course, quite saddening. Such reflexes alone show that there is much suspicion about the issue."

The new photos and footage clearly show the couple holding hands as they leave the marriage office together.

 

Jamal Khashoggi has been pictured in his final hours. Picture: A News
Jamal Khashoggi has been pictured in his final hours. Picture: A News

 

The couple were seen holding hands as they left the marriage office together. Picture: A News
The couple were seen holding hands as they left the marriage office together. Picture: A News

The photos back up Ms Cengiz's account that the couple had bought an apartment and intended to marry as soon as they received the appropriate paperwork from the Saudi consulate.

In a heartfelt New York Times piece which ran earlier this month, the doctoral student said the couple had been "cheerful" the morning they travelled to the consulate.

"We were going to browse appliances for our new home and meet with our friends and family members over dinner," she wrote. "When we arrived at the consulate, he went right in. He told me to alert the Turkish authorities if I did not hear from him soon."

She said the pair bonded over their "shared passion for democracy, human rights and freedom of expression" when they met at a conference in Istanbul.

"I had planned a party, inviting his closest friends to surround him with the love and warmth that he had missed," she wrote. "We would have been married now."

 

Jamal Khashoggi with fiancee Hatice Cengiz.
Jamal Khashoggi with fiancee Hatice Cengiz.

She also said Khashoggi saw himself as a "lonely patriot" who was "using his pen for the good of his country".

Of the Saudi Government, she said: "If the allegations are true, and Jamal has been murdered by the errand boys of Mohammed bin Salman, he is already a martyr.

"Oppression never lasts forever," she said. "Tyrants eventually pay for their sins."

She also addressed reports US President Donald Trump is seeking to invite her to the White House, saying: "If he makes a genuine contribution to the efforts to reveal what happened inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul that day, I will consider accepting his invitation."

Two nights ago, Ms Cengiz made a farewell tweet to her late partner, saying: "They took your bodily presence from my world. But your beautiful laugh will remain in my soul forever. My darling #jkhashoggi".

 

KHASHOGGI'S 'BODY DOUBLE' LEAVES CONSULATE

Previously published satellite images showed Khashoggi walking into the Saudi consulate on October 2.

 

This CCTV image purportedly showing Jamal Khashoggi entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 2. Picture: CCTV/TRT World via AP
This CCTV image purportedly showing Jamal Khashoggi entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 2. Picture: CCTV/TRT World via AP

 

Khashoggi purportedly entering the consulate.
Khashoggi purportedly entering the consulate.

But he never came out.

A man appearing to wear Jamal Khashoggi's clothes left the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul following his killing there, according to a new surveillance video, while a member of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman's entourage made four calls to the royal's office around the same time, reports said on Monday.

The reports by CNN and the Turkish daily Salah came just a day before Prince Mohammed's high-profile investment summit is to begin in Riyadh and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has promised that details of Khashoggi's killing "will be revealed in all its nakedness".

A man appearing to wear Jamal Khashoggi’s clothes seen leaving the consulate.
A man appearing to wear Jamal Khashoggi’s clothes seen leaving the consulate.

Meanwhile, Turkish crime-scene investigators swarmed a garage on Monday night in Istanbul where a Saudi consular vehicle had been parked.

All this yet again adds to the pressure Saudi Arabia faces over the slaying of the Washington Post columnist.

The kingdom's claim on Saturday that Khashoggi died in a "fistfight" met international scepticism and allegations of a cover-up to absolve the 33-year-old Crown Prince of direct responsibility.

Turkish media reports and officials maintain that a 15-member Saudi team flew to Istanbul on October 2, knowing Khashoggi would arrive for a document he needed to get married. Once he was inside the diplomatic mission, the Saudis accosted the journalist, cut off his fingers, killed and dismembered the 59-year-old.

CNN aired surveillance video on Monday showing a man apparently wearing Khashoggi's dress shirt, suit jacket and pants.

It cited a Turkish official as describing the man as a "body double" and a member of the Saudi team sent to Istanbul to target him.

The man is seen in the footage walking out of the consulate via its back exit, then taking a taxi to Istanbul's famed Sultan Ahmed Mosque, where he went into a public bathroom, changed back out of the clothes and left.

Later, the state-run broadcaster TRT also reported that a man who entered the consulate building was seen leaving the building in Khashoggi's clothes. In the days after Khashoggi vanished, Saudi officials initially said that he had left the consulate, implying premeditation on the part of the Saudi team.

 

- with wires



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