Turkish investigators search for Khashoggi remains

Officials raid a property in an isolated, rural village in northwest Turkey.

November 27, 2018, 5:14 AM

Istanbul, Turkey -- Investigators in Istanbul have searched two adjacent villas in a remote village in northwestern Turkey as part of the hunt for the remains of Jamal Khashoggi.

The Washington Post columnist's body has not been recovered since he was murdered in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on Oct. 2.

Investigators are also studying a telephone conversation that took place between one member of the assassination team that allegedly killed Khashoggi and a resident at the property on Oct. 1 – one day before the murder took place, according to Irfan Fidan, Istanbul's chief prosecutor, who issued a statement on Monday afternoon.

The Saudi citizen living in one of the two villas has been identified as Mohammed Ahmad A. Alfaozan, according to the prosecutor's statement.

"The communication has been considered to be about the disposal or hiding of Khashoggi's corpse," the statement said.

Speaking on the condition of anonymity, a Turkish official familiar with the investigation told ABC News that Alfaozan is a Saudi Arabian businessman who left Turkey shortly after the murder and has not returned.

Meanwhile, Turkey's foreign minister described an audio recording that allegedly captured the murder of Khashoggi.

"I listened to it. He was killed within seven minutes. It was a deliberate murder," Mevlut Cavusoglu told German daily Sueddeutsche Zeitung.

Cavusoglu said he could hear the forensic doctor instructing others to listen to music while he cut up the body.

"It can be heard in the recording how the forensic expert gave instructions. He is heard saying that the others should listen to music while he is dismembering the body. It's clear that he is enjoying it. He likes to cut people up. This is disgusting," Cavusoglu said.

Cavusoglu also said that Ankara does not believe those who murdered Khashoggi acted alone. While pointing out that evidence was necessary before making firm accusations, Cavusoglu told Sueddeutsche Zeitung that many in the Turkish government believe Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman was responsible for ordering the murder.

When asked about a possible meeting between bin Salman and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan at the two-day G20 summit in Argentina, which begins Nov. 30, Cavusoglu said Erdogan would consider it.

"At this point, there is no reason not to meet the crown prince," he said.

Ahead of the G20 summit, Argentine officials are considering whether to file charges against the crown prince for war crimes and torture.

According to a statement from Human Rights Watch (HRW), the group filed a submission with an Argentine judge, requesting that authorities assess the crown prince's role in connection with alleged war crimes by the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen and his possible complicity in the alleged torture of Saudi nationals, including Khashoggi.

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