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Turkey to search for missing Saudi journalist

by Julia A. Seymour
Posted 10/09/18, 10:59 am

Turkey said Tuesday it will search the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul for a journalist who went missing after visiting there last week. Turkish investigators told reporters over the weekend they believe officials there killed Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi in a “preplanned murder.” Saudi Arabia has denied the allegation. Khashoggi, a Saudi national living in self-imposed exile in Washington, D.C., disappeared last Tuesday after entering the consulate to obtain documents for marriage to his Turkish fiancée, Hatice Cengiz. She waited for him outside the consulate and contacted authorities when he did not return.

Khashoggi wrote columns for The Washington Post critical of Saudi policies and actions under Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. The Post published a blank column Friday to highlight his disappearance.

U.S. President Donald Trump has expressed concern about the disappearance, and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said U.S. officials have raised the matter with their Saudi counterparts. “We call on the government of Saudi Arabia to support a thorough investigation of Mr. Khashoggi’s disappearance and to be transparent about the results of that investigation,” Pompeo said in a statement.

Saudi Arabia maintains Khashoggi left the building through another door shortly after his arrival, but officials have not offered any evidence of his exit. “My understanding is he entered and he got out after a few minutes or one hour,” Crown Prince Mohammed told Bloomberg reporters last Wednesday. “I’m not sure. We are investigating this through the foreign ministry to see exactly what happened at that time.”

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Julia A. Seymour

Julia has worked as a writer in the Washington, D.C., area since 2005 and was a fall 2012 participant in a World Journalism Institute mid-career class conducted by WORLD editor in chief Marvin Olasky in Asheville, N.C. Follow Julia on Twitter @SteakandaBible.

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