A man lights-up candles by posters picturing Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi during a gathering outside the Saudi Arabia consulate in Istanbul, on October 25, 2018. – Jamal Khashoggi, a Washington Post contributor, was killed on October 2, 2018 after a visit to the Saudi consulate in Istanbul to obtain paperwork before marrying his Turkish fiancee. (Photo by Yasin AKGUL / AFP)
Saudi Arabia’s chief public prosecutor met members of Turkey’s intelligence agency overnight as part of an investigation into the murder of journalist and Riyadh critic Jamal Khashoggi, local media reported Wednesday.
Attorney General Sheikh Saud al-Mojeb, who travelled to Istanbul this week, left his hotel around 2110 GMT on Tuesday escorted by a convoy and went to the regional head offices of the Turkish Intelligence Organisation (MIT), the private DHA news agency reported.
There was no immediate information on what was discussed.
Khashoggi, a 59-year-old Washington Post contributor, was killed after entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 2 to obtain paperwork ahead of his upcoming wedding. His body has not yet been found.
The case has brought near unprecedented international scrutiny on Saudi Arabia and its powerful Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman, whom Khashoggi had criticised.
After weeks of shifting official narratives, Saudi Arabia has said the journalist was killed by a “rogue operation” and arrested 18 people allegedly connected to his death.
Mojeb was the first Saudi official to acknowledge that the killing was “premeditated” based on the results of Turkey’s investigation.
He met with Istanbul chief prosecutor Irfan Fidan twice this week and visited the consulate — the scene of the murder — on Tuesday.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has repeatedly called on Riyadh to reveal the location of the body, as well as who ordered the hit.
Abdulkadir Selvi, a well-connected pro-government columnist in Turkey’s Hurriyet newspaper, said the Saudi prosecutor refused to share any information with the Turkish authorities during his visit.
“It seems the Saudi prosecutor is trying to obtain the information in the hands of Turkey rather than share the information he has,” Selvi wrote Wednesday.
He also claimed that Mojeb was in pursuit of Khashoggi’s phone, which the journalist handed to his Turkish fiancee before entering the consulate.
That request sparked “uneasiness” on the Turkish side, the columnist wrote, noting that Mojeb refused to share the testimonies of the 18 suspects. Riyadh has rejected Ankara’s repeated requests for the men to sent to Turkey for trial.
Selvi claimed the prosecutor must know the location of Khashoggi’s body because, he said, the 18 suspects had confessed.
“Why did the chief prosecutor hide this information from the Turkish side?” Selvi asked.
“Because the chief prosecutor is working to save crown prince by covering up the investigation rather than shed light on the murder.”