Khashoggi killers 'acted on Saudi orders': Turkey FM

Khashoggi killers 'acted on Saudi orders': Turkey FM
'This 15-man team did not come to Turkey on their own, they came on orders,' Turkey's chief diplomat said, pressing Saudi Arabia to locate the body of slain journalist Khashoggi.
2 min read
06 November, 2018
Turkey's Foreign Minister is in Japan [Getty]
The 15-man Saudi "hit squad" alleged to have flown to Turkey to assassinate Jamal Khashoggi must have been acting on orders, Turkey's Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Tuesday, as he issued demands for Saudi authorities to locate the body of the slain journalist.

"This 15-man team did not come to Turkey on their own, they came on orders. Without due orders and permissions, 15 people cannot come from Saudi Arabia to kill their own citizen," Cavusoglu told reporters in Tokyo.

Turkey's chief diplomat reiterated, however, that it was not Saudi King Salman who issued the order for Khashoggi's murder, after speaking to him twice since the writer's death.

"I think it is Saudi Arabia’s responsibility to find out what happened to Khashoggi’s body and inform us about it, as the 15-man team are still in Saudi Arabia," Cavusoglu added.

Read more: MbS: The new Saddam of Arabia?

Turkey's President Erdogan has made repeated calls for the Saudi authorities to locate the body, and to extradite the 15-man team to Turkey, after the Gulf kingdom admitted the veteran journalist was killed in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul.

After Khashoggi went missing on 2 October after going to the consulate to pick up a document, Saudi officials insisted he had lef the consulate.

Weeks later they admitted he had died in a "rogue operation", however, the Saudi chief prosecutor has said the attack was premeditated, with many others suspecting the orders came from the powerful Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

Turkish and Saudi officials have made joint inspections of the consulate building and consul's residence, however, Erdogan insists Saudi authorities are still trying to cover up the murder.

Ankara has also demanded Riyadh cooperate in finding Khashoggi's body, which Istanbul's chief prosecutor said had been dismembered.

Latest reports, although specualtive, detail that the body was subsequently dissolved in acid.