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Jamal Khashoggi’s disappearance: ‘Rogue killers’ may have murdered Saudi journalist, says Trump

The missing journalist was last seen going inside the main entrance of the Saudi Arabian consulate in Istanbul on October 2.

Washington: After a phone call with Saudi King Salman on Tuesday, US president Donald Trump suggested that “rogue killers” could be behind journalist Khashoggi’s disappearance, citing desert city premier’s “flat denial” of responsibility.

Jamal Khashoggi was last seen going inside the main entrance of the Saudi Arabian consulate in Istanbul on October 2. He was there to complete a paperwork for a document, to prove that he was divorced. This document would have allowed him to marry his fiancée, Hatice Cengiz, a Turkish citizen, who waited outside.

Though the working hours of the consulate were until 3:30 PM, Khashoggi did not come out even after 4 PM. After the consulate was officially closed for the day, his fiancée reported him missing. The Saudi Arabian government said that he had left the consulate from the back gate.

On Oct. 10, Turkish officials claimed that the “highest levels of the royal court” in Saudi Arabia ordered Khashoggi’s assassination and dismemberment by a 15-man team, as per a media report.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo left shortly after noon today for Riyadh to meet with King Salman. The family of missing Saudi journalist has issued a statement regarding in the wake of his disappearance.

Here is the full text of the statement:

We are sadly and anxiously following the conflicting news regarding the fate of our father after losing contact with him two weeks ago, when he disappeared after entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul. Our family is traumatised, and yearns to be together during this painful time. The strong moral and legal responsibility which our father instilled in us obliges us to call for the establishment of an independent and impartial international commission to inquire into the circumstances of his death. We are grateful to all those who have respected our privacy during these difficult times.”

Jamal Khashoggi was a Saudi Arabian journalist, author, and the former general manager and editor-in-chief of Al-Arab News Channel. He had interviewed the deceased terrorist leader Osma bin Laden on several ocassions.

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