Saudi Arabia Now Says Khashoggi's Killing 'Premeditated'

Bandar Al-Jaloud  AFP  Getty Images

Bandar Al-Jaloud AFP Getty Images

Eighteen Saudis are being investigated on the charge of "intentional homicide with premeditation" and torture over the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, a senior Turkish official with knowledge of the investigation told CNN.

Such behaviour undermines stability in the Middle East at a time when the region needs it most, said the top United States official in Bahrain while speaking at a security conference with top Saudi officials in attendance, including the kingdom's Foreign Minister.

The Istanbul prosecutor's office has submitted an extradition request to Saudi Arabia for the 18 suspects, who have not been charged.

The report also claims that Khashoggi was murdered by a group of men who had close relations with the Saudi's crown prince. "You have to tell", said Erdogan.

The killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi "undermines regional stability" and the U.S. State Department plans to take further action in response to the killing, U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said Saturday at an global conference in the Middle East.

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The Saudi change of tack came after Central Intelligence Agency director Gina Haspel reportedly heard an alleged audio recording of the killing during a fact-finding visit to Turkey this week.

Mr Khashoggi's Turkish fiancee, meanwhile, gave an anguished and tearful TV interview in which she said she keeps asking herself if she had missed some signs and should have prevented him from entering the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul on October 2.

Mr Erdogan said on Friday that Turkey would reveal more evidence about the killing but was not in any rush to do so, indicating that Turkish authorities will methodically increase pressure on Saudi Arabia. Haspel was due to brief President Donald Trump about Khashoggi on October 25. And on Friday, a Kremlin spokesman expressed confidence in the official Saudi investigation and account of the case - remarks that were extensively covered by Russian and Saudi news media.ImageCrown Prince Mohammed bin Salman speaking on Wednesday at an investors conference in Riyadh.CreditTasneem Alsultan for The New York Times "There is no reason that would lead anyone not to believe Saudi Arabia's announcements", said the spokesman, Dmitry Peskov."We have heard the royal family's statement condemning this murder", he said.

A statement from Saudi Attorney General Saud al-Mojeb attributed the conclusion about a calculated killing - one of the initial findings of a joint Turkish-Saudi investigation - to information from Turkish counterparts. Turkey has described the killing as a planned political murder, while demanding Saudi government hold those responsible accountable.

"The individuals are Saudi nationals, they're detained in Saudi Arabia, the investigation is in Saudi Arabia and they will be prosecuted in Saudi Arabia", he said at the Bahrain summit.

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Saudi Arabia has returned suspects to Turkey before. Questions, however, have persisted about what the 33-year-old Saudi crown prince, a target of Khashoggi's criticism, knew about the operation in Istanbul. I said, 'You know how to make people talk.

The United Nations on Thursday said journalist Jamal Khashoggi's murder "bears all the hallmarks of an extrajudicial execution" committed by the Saudi state.

His departure came after he was photographed with Prince Mohammed during a condolence visit.

Salah is a dual USA and Saudi citizen.

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