Intel: Why Turkey outed an alleged Saudi 'hit squad'

Iranian-Saudi detente could transform the region and US power is there to prevent

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More than 20 Republican and Democratic senators instructed Trump to order an investigation into Khashoggi's disappearance under legislation that authorizes imposition of sanctions for perpetrators of extrajudicial killings, torture or other gross human rights violations. A senior Turkish official told the Times that "Ankara hoped that Washington and the global community would take the lead in challenging Saudi Arabia".

And we have investigators over there and we're working with Turkey, and frankly we're working with Saudi Arabia.

According to the Turkish police sources, 15 Saudis, including several officials who arrived on the two planes, entered the consulate in Istanbul while Khashoggi was inside.

Saudi officials say Khashoggi left through an alternate exit, but have offered no proof to support that contention. The footage shows Khashoggi entering the consulate on October 2.

"Our expectation is that in making your determination you will consider any relevant information, including with respect to the highest ranking officials in the Government of Saudi Arabia", they said.

Heather Nauert, a spokesperson for the US State Department, said on Tuesday that Trump plans to speak to the Saudis - whose crown prince, Mohammed Bin Salman Trump, is thought to be close to - about what happened. "We expect a thorough investigation and total transparency from the Saudi authorities on what happened". Trump visited Saudi Arabia in May 2017, and Mohammad has applauded his decision to withdraw from the Obama Administration's nuclear arms agreement with Iran.

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"I recognised his photograph immediately", said Ghanem al-Dosari, a Saudi satirist living in exile in London, who knew Mr Mutreb socially.

Trump also appeared for an interview on Fox News Wednesday night, were he was reluctant to say he would cut off arms sales to Saudi Arabia over the disappearance and possible murder of Khashoggi. "Everything points to them".

Khashoggi is a resident of the United States and has been living in Washington, D.C. The former editor-in-chief of a Saudi newspaper and then an advisor to Saudi government officials, in the a year ago Khashoggi had written columns critical of the Saudi goverment in the Post.

"The US had no advance knowledge of Jamal Khashoggi's disappearance" or of any kind of threat, he said Wednesday.

The team is said to include a Saudi special forces officer, members of the royal guard and a senior forensics expert.

Mr Khashoggi had gone to the consulate in Istanbul on October 2 to get paperwork he needed for his upcoming marriage while his Turkish fiancee waited outside. The video shows aircraft waiting on the tarmac.

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Security camera footage released on Wednesday by Turkish television showed a man believed to be Khashoggi enter the consulate. An hour and 54 minutes later, according to the time stamp, a black Mercedes Vito with diplomatic license plates, which resembled a van parked outside of the consulate when the writer walked in, drives some 2 kilometres (1.2 miles) to the consul's home, where it parks inside a garage.

A man reads the Sabah newspaper, with a headline that reads "15-member assassination squad " in Ankara, Turkey.

Erdoğan added that Turkey has asked Saudi officials to allow Turkish authorities to investigate the incident at the consulate premises and steps have been taken within the framework of the Vienna Convention, since the Saudis have given permission to a Turkish investigation team to enter the consulate.

Embassies and consulates under the Vienna Convention are technically foreign soil and must be protected by host nations.

"We want to see what's going on there", he said.

"Trump not only sacrificed his personal reputation, but he sacrificed the reputation of the United States of America and the image of the country in the eyes of people around the world, [when] he attached himself [to] those tyrants in the Middle East".

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