The Turkish government has informed US officials it has audio and video recordings that prove that Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi was killed inside Saudi Consulate in Instanbul, according to a report by the Washington Post.
The video and audio recording reportedly show that Saudi Consulate security team detained Jamal Khashoggi after he entered the building on October 2 to obtain some documents for his upcoming wedding, and then killed him and dismembered his body.
According to US and Turkish officials cited by the Washington Post, the audio recordings in particular provide “persuasive and gruesome” evidence that the Saudi security is responsible for the journalist’s death.
“The voice recording from inside the embassy lays out what happened to Jamal after he entered,” said one source with knowledge of the recording.
“You can hear his voice and the voices of men speaking Arabic,” the source added. “You can hear how he was interrogated, tortured and then murdered.”
The other person quoted by Washington Post says the recording proves Khashoggi was beaten by the Saudis.
The existence of these recordings explain why Turkish officials were so fast to accuse Saudis of killing the journalists, the newspaper reads. However, Ankara is reluctant to release these recordings as it would reveal the ways Turkish intelligence spies upon foreign nations on its soil, the source said.
Jamal Khashoggi, a contributor to the Washington Post, known for his criticism of Saudi King Salman and Crown Prince Mohhamad, has been missing since October 2 after allegedly visiting the Saudi consulate in Istanbul to acquire documentation for his upcoming marriage. The Saudis denied allegations that the journalist has been captured or murdered and insisted he left the building later the same day.
In the meantime, media companies are pulling out of Saudi investment conference over the growing outrage of Khashoggi disappearance, Reuters reported Thursday. Journalists and executives of various major media companies, including New York Times, CNBC, Economist and Viacom have already announced their decision not to attend the event. The Financial Times reportedly announced it is reviewing its involvement as a media partner.