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Turkish Prosecutors Ask to Send Khashoggi Journalist Case to Saudi Arabia: Report

Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi was last seen entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul. (File)

Istanbul:

A Turkish prosecutor has asked an Istanbul court to dismiss the case of the brutal murder of Riyadh critic Jamal Khashoggi and transfer him to Saudi Arabia, local media reported on Thursday.

The development comes as Turkey is trying to dilute relations with Saudi Arabia, which worsened after the assassination of Khashoggi in 2018, a contributor to The Washington Post, inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul.

Prosecutors said during a trial in Istanbul on Thursday that the case was “protracted because the court order could not be executed on the grounds that the suspect was a foreigner”, private news agency DHA reported.

The court is expected to approve the justice ministry’s request to transfer the case to Saudi Arabia, the news agency said.

On October 2, 2018, Khashoggi entered the Saudi consulate in Istanbul to file papers to marry his Turkish fiance. According to U.S. and Turkish officials, a squad of Saudi attackers were waiting to strangle him and cut off his body, which was never taken.

The killings sparked international outrage that continued to reverberate, with Western intelligence agencies accusing Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman of allowing the killings.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said at the time that orders to kill “came from the highest levels” of the Saudi government.

Dissatisfied with the trial in Saudi Arabia, Turkey has launched its own investigation into the killings and put 26 Saudis on trial without attendance including two close to the crown prince.

Erdogan said in January he planned to visit Riyadh – coming at a critical moment for Turkey, where inflation has soared to more than 50 percent.

The next trial is scheduled for April 7.

(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is automatically generated from a syndicated feed.)

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