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Jamal Khashoggi disappearance: Saudi Arabia allows Turkey to search consulate

Published: Updated:

Saudi Arabia has agreed to let Turkish authorities search the kingdom's Istanbul consulate after prominent Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi went missing last week, the Turkish foreign ministry said Tuesday.

"Saudi authorities said they were open to cooperation and that a search can be conducted at the consulate building," the ministry said in a statement.

Prior to last Friday, media outlets affiliated with the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood and Qatar carried a news report that claimed that Saudi Arabia had detained Khashoggi inside its consulate in Istanbul.

The Saudi Crown Prince refuted the claims later in an interview during which he said Turkey can search the kingdom’s consulate in Istanbul for the Saudi journalist, saying: “We have nothing to hide”.

On Friday, a team from Reuters news agency entered the consulate and made sure Khashoggi was not there.

Saudi Arabia’s Ambassador to the United States, Prince Khalid bin Salman bin Abdulaziz, has responded to what he termed as “grim and malicious” rumors over the investigation surrounding the disappearance of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

In a statement released on Tuesday evening, Prince Khalid said “I would normally prefer not to address such outrageous claims, especially when it concerns the wellbeing of a missing citizen who dedicated a great portion of his life to serve his country.”

He continued, saying that he felt the need to address the “various malicious leaks and grim rumors flying around about Jamal's whereabouts and fate.”

Prince Khalid said: “Jamal has many friends in the Kingdom, including myself, and despite our differences, and his choice to go into his so called "self-exile," we still maintained regular contact when he was in Washington.”