Trump, Ryan concerned by Khashoggi disappearance

Journalist's Disappearance Forces Trump's Hand on Saudi Arabia

Turkey sought permission Monday to search Saudi Arabia's consulate in Istanbul after a prominent journalist from the kingdom went missing last week, media reports said, amid claims he was murdered.

A man holds a poster of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi during a protest Monday organized by members of the Turkish-Arabic Media Association at the entrance to Saudi Arabia's consulate in Istanbul.

The relationship between Saudi Arabia and Turkey has always been contentious. It's unclear when such a search would take place.

The Turkish ministry of foreign affairs had stated that Saudi Arabia has provided all assistance and cooperation in the case of the missing journalist who has disappeared in Istanbul last week.

OHCHR spokesperson underlined the need for an independent inquiry, noting that the development followed "several cases" in Saudi Arabia recently where human rights defenders and journalists have been detained.

"If he left, you have to prove it with footage".

He used to criticise Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman on his adventure against Yemen, arresting women activists and diplomatic ire with Canada. Saudi Arabia may have agreed to the search in order to appease its Western allies and the global community.

Khashoggi had entered the consulate's premises at around 1pm (10:00 GMT) on Tuesday to secure paperwork in order to marry his Turkish fiancée, identified only as Hatice A.

"We have to get an outcome from this investigation as soon as possible", Erdogan said from Budapest. The Turkish newspaper Hurriyet also published the image.

Turkish officials have suggested Khashoggi was murdered.

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It was not immediately clear why the cameras did not work.

The Turkish security camera video was reminiscent of the surveillance video sleuthing done by officials investigating the assassination of a Hamas operative in Dubai in 2010 or the slaying of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un's half brother in Malaysia in 2017.

Mr Erdogan said he is still hopeful that Jamal Khashoggi is alive.

Some commentators in Saudi Arabia and the UAE have also attempted to link Khashoggi's disappearance to a "Qatari-Turkish Islamist smear campaign", claiming that either Qatari or Turkish leaderships would have better information about Khashoggi's location than the Saudis in whose consulate he was last seen.

"If the reports of Jamal's murder are true, it is a monstrous and unfathomable act", the Washington Post's editorial page editor Fred Hiatt said in a statement. "If the story the Saudis are telling, that he just walked out. after half an hour, if that's true, they ought to have facts and documents and evidence and tapes to back that up".

Turkish officials and Khashoggi's friends have told The Associated Press they fear the writer was killed at the consulate.

"We demand the worldwide community to pressure Saudi Arabia and Mohammed bin Salman to tell us exactly what happened inside the consulate... and to tell us every detail of who was involved in this crime", Okda told AFP. Turkish officials are trying to identify them as part of their probe into Khashoggi's disappearance.

He added that he still hoped the reports of his friend's death were untrue.

Yasin Aktay, who advises Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan in his ruling AK Party, told Reuters that Turkish authorities believed a group of 15 Saudi nationals were "most certainly involved" in the matter, and added that statements by Saudi officials on the absence of camera records were not honest.

"Now when this person enters, whose duty is it to prove that he left or not?" Erdogan said he himself was following the investigation, saying it was his political and humanitarian duty.

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