Graham Slams Khashoggi Investigation, Points to Saudi Royal Family

Cheryl Sanders
October 19, 2018

Turkish authorities say Khashoggi was killed October 2 during a visit to the Saudi consulate in Istanbul to obtain a document required to get married. Turkish officials allege Khashoggi, who has written critically about the Saudi government, was killed, which the Saudis have fiercely denied.

A pro-government Turkish newspaper last week published evidence from investigators who it said had identified a 15-member Saudi intelligence team that arrived in Istanbul on diplomatic passports hours before Khashoggi disappeared.

Khashoggi was killed within minutes and his torturers severed his fingers during the interrogation, the newspaper said.

As they cut off Khashoggi's head and dismembered his body, a doctor of forensics who had been brought along for the dissection and disposal had some advice for the others, according to the senior Turkish official.

"I. could go on about places where the Saudis and the Americans are working together", the top US diplomat said.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said yesterday he met with Saudi King Salman and his son, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

It comes as details emerge of an apparent audio recording of the alleged torture and murder of the Washington Post columnist in the Saudi consulate in the Turkish city.

Despite such heated rhetoric condemning the Saudis, others are suggesting the media seems eager to believe the claims of Turkish officials.

US President Donald Trump has issued varied responses, most recently giving credence to Saudi denials and comparing the treatment of Saudi Arabia to that of his Supreme Court nominee, and now justice, Brett Kavanaugh.

"I think we have to find out what happened first", Trump told the Associated Press.

After he was shown into the office of the Saudi consul, Mohammad al-Otaibi, the agents seized Khashoggi nearly immediately and began to beat and torture him, eventually cutting off his fingers, the senior Turkish official said.

"I do think it's important that everyone. keep in their mind that we have lots of important relationships - financial relationships between USA and Saudi companies, governmental relationship, things we work on together all across the world", Pompeo said.

Confirming that the tape has been requested, Mr Trump added: "I'm not sure yet that it exists, probably does, possibly does".

LTC Tubaigy reportedly listened to music during the killing. Though Ozturk didn't spell it out, such an arrangement effectively would translate into allowing the affair to be buried with a few "rogue" officials, as Trump put it, being pinned with the blame.

Trump has appeared unwilling to distance himself too much from the Saudis, citing Riyadh's role in countering Iranian influence in the region - and tens of billions of dollars in potential arms deals.

Trump said he hoped the Saudis' own investigation of Khashoggi's disappearance would be concluded in "less than a week".

During Pompeo's visit to Saudi Arabia, the top diplomat and the crown prince smiled for the cameras and emphasized the two countries' mutual interests. Before leaving Riyadh, Mr. Pompeo told reporters that the Saudi leaders "made no exceptions on who they would hold accountable".

The legislation states US military aid and sales to Saudi Arabia would be prohibited, pending confirmation from Pompeo on the status of Khashoggi.

On Wednesday afternoon, Turkish investigators entered the Saudi consul's residence, about 200m (650ft) from the consulate.

Other reports by iNewsToday