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Alleged Saudi hit squad linked to Jamal Khashoggi disappearance
10 October 2018, 10:59 | Joann Bryant
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The official described a quick and complex operation in which Mr. Khashoggi was killed within two hours of his arrival at the consulate by a team of Saudi agents, who dismembered his body with a bone saw they brought for the objective.
On Wednesday, State Department spokesman Robert Palladino said the United States "had no advance knowledge" of such a plan.
Worldwide media advocacy group Reporters Without Borders on Wednesday called for an independent global investigation into the fate of Jamal Khashoggi - the Saudi journalist who has been missing since October 2 - saying his disappearance has come amid "a particularly harsh and opaque crackdown on Saudi journalists and bloggers".
This new stance is triggering criticism from some Iran hawks and comes amid disparate statements about the administration's willingness to grant other concessions, such as preserving Iran's access to worldwide financial markets, as the Free Beacon first reported on Monday. Washington said on Friday it was considering waivers for nations that were reducing imports of Iranian oil. Corker said "everything points to them". The security establishment concluded that Khashoggi's killing was directed from the top because only the most senior Saudi leaders could order an operation of such scale and complexity.
She alerted authorities to Khashoggi's disappearance after he did not exit the consulate, where she had been waiting outside for him.
They say Khashoggi left the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, where he was attempting to finalize his divorce, shortly after he arrived.
Pence was asked on the Hugh Hewitt syndicated radio program if Washington would send FBI investigators to Turkey if Saudi Arabia requested it.
The Post report, citing an unnamed "person familiar with the information", said the intercepted communications showed that as yet unidentified Saudi officials wanted to lure Mr. Khashoggi back to Saudi Arabia and lay hands on him there.
Tim Kaine, a Democratic Senator from the U.S. state of Virginia, said Khashoggi's disappearance is personal to him since the Saudi journalist had been living in the state.
A surveillance video image surfaced on Tuesday showing Khashoggi walking into the consulate in Istanbul's upscale 4th Levent neighborhood. "It's a very sad situation, it's a very bad situation, and we're going to get to the bottom of it". It said they checked into two hotels in Istanbul on October 2 and left later that day.
Republican Sen. Bob Corker of Tennessee.
"I've never heard of an embassy in my life that doesn't tape", he said.
"I think it's going to be 45 days of extreme volatility, it could spike up, it could also go the other way", Dudley told CNBC news network. "But I don't want to rush to judgment".
Angry U.S. lawmakers likely won't cause the administration to turn away from Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. Saudi Arabia may have agreed to the search in order to reassure its Western allies and the worldwide community.
A human rights activist holds picture of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi during a protest outside the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul, Turkey October 9, 2018.
Saudi authorities have said the journalist left the building after his visit and rejected Turkish police suggestions he might have been killed there.
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