Published: Sun, October 21, 2018
Worldwide | By Sean Reid

Jamal Khashoggi died inside our consulate after a fight, says Saudi Arabia

Jamal Khashoggi died inside our consulate after a fight, says Saudi Arabia

Calling Saudi Arabia a crucial ally against Iran that purchases billions of dollars-worth of United States weapons, Donald Trump lamented Khashoggi's "unacceptable" death but praised Riyadh for making the first arrests in the ongoing probe.

The government said that 18 Saudis had been arrested for further investigation while Deputy Director of Saudi Intelligence Ahmed al-Assiri has been dismissed.

Saudi Arabia said 18 Saudi suspects were in custody and intelligence officials had been fired.

Erdogan and Salman "emphasised the importance of continuing to work together with complete cooperation", said a Turkish presidential source, who asked not to be named.

Here is a look at the Saudi narrative regarding Khashoggi, as it developed. Saudi officials, however, asserted that he left the consulate afterwards.

Saudi has not yet named any of their suspects.

Jamal Khashoggi, who was then a media advisor to Prince Turki Al-Faisal, outside the Royal Courts of Justice in London.

Deputy intelligence chief Ahmed Assiri was sacked and his Twitter account posted a message in Arabic Friday night.

"I will remain a loyal servant to my country for all times", he wrote.

Qahtani is an adviser to Mohammed bin Salman while Asiri is known for his role as spokesman for the kingdom about the war in Yemen.

"Saudi Arabia has been a great ally, but what happened is unacceptable", Trump says.

Khashoggi was tortured before being killed
Meanwhile, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Wednesday said, "we will probably know (what happened) by the end of the week". As they sat down for their first meeting, the crown prince, in English, told Pompeo, "We are strong and old allies".

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"Any attempt to get rid of the pressure on Saudi Arabia and to accept a compromise policy would result in giving a "license to kill" to a Kingdom that puts in jail, lashes, kidnaps and even kills journalists who dare to investigate and launch debates", he tweeted.

"The claim that Khashoggi was killed while brawling with 15 men dispatched from Saudi Arabia is not at all credible".

The White House added it is "saddened" by the confirmed death of the Saudi journalist. The kingdom has described assertions in Turkish media leaks, based on purported audio recordings that Khashoggi was tortured, killed and dismembered inside the consulate, as "baseless".

In a statement on Friday night, White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said the U.S. will closely follow global investigations into Mr Khashoggi's death and will advocate for justice that is "timely, transparent and in accordance with all due process". "He extends his condolences to Mr Khashoggi's family and friends", the statement read.

The royal decree also ordered the dismissal of a number of officers working in the general intelligence agency.

It will be led by Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman.

It called on Saudi authorities to produce Khashoggi's body so independent forensic experts could perform an autopsy.

He added: "I'm doing what I'm doing as vice chairman of the Conservative party and I don't have time for any other responsibility".

'MbS had no knowledge of this specific operation and certainly did not order a kidnapping or murder of anybody.

'He will have been aware of the general instruction to tell [critics of the regime] to come back'.

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