The new information has arisen after a transcript from the incident was published by the Daily Sabar in Turkey. Khashoggi made his way into the Saudi Arabian consulate in Istanbul to collect documents related to his planned marriage, but never left the building. Initially reported missing, it was found by Turkish police upon entry of the consulate that Khashoggi had been killed and the evidence had been tampered with. A CIA investigation concluded that the Washington Post journalist had been murdered in a struggle before his killers began dismembering his body. More crucially, the investigation concluded that the order to kill Khashoggi had come directly from Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.
The recording, obtained through Turkish surveillance microphones in the consulate, captured the struggle in which agents placed a plastic bag over the Khashoggi’s head.
His last words were exclaimed at this point. He said: “I have asthma. Do not do it, you will suffocate me.”
The first part of the recording details a conversation involving Maher Abdulaziz Mutreb, the deputy commander of the hit squad.
The tape is time-stamped 1.02pm, just 12 minutes before Khashoggi arrived at the consulate.
It reveals chilling dialogue between the two while planning the assasination.
Mutreb can be heard referring to the body as “the animal to be dismembered” before asking: “Is it possible to put the body in a bag?”
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Another voice responds: “No. Too heavy, very tall too. Actually, I’ve always worked on cadavers. I know how to cut very well.
“I have never worked on a warm body though, but I’ll also manage that easily. I normally put on my earphones and listen to music when I cut cadavers. In the meantime, I sip on my coffee and smoke.
“After I dismember it, you will wrap the parts into plastic bags, put them in suitcases and take them out (of the building).”
The recording also captured a 30-minute period where Khashoggi’s body was dismembered.
His remains have not been recovered. It is thought that the agents gathered his body into suitcases and left the scene.
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Saudi Arabia has admitted Khashoggi’s killing was a premeditated act carried out by government agents, but said they were ‘rogue elements’ who acted without official authorisation.
However, international observers and critics of the regime believe Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the de-facto ruler of Saudi Arabia, gave the order himself.
Eleven of the 15-strong hit squad have since been put on trial for murder, including five who are facing the death penalty.
The murder came after Khashoggi had written articles across his career that were critical of the Saudi government.
The Washington Post revealed that Khashoggi’s columns “at times” were “shaped” by an organisation funded by Saudi Arabia’s regional nemesis, Qatar, including by proposing his topics, giving him drafts, goading him, and giving him research.
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