Saudi Prosecutor Says Team Dispatched to Rendition Khashoggi Killed Him

[Content Note: Murder.]

Saudi Arabia's public prosecutor Saud al-Mojeb has announced the findings of his investigation into the death of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, and his conclusions are curious, to say the least.

Kareem Fahim and Zakaria Zakaria at the Washington Post report:
[The prosecutor asserts] that a team of Saudi agents who had been dispatched to Istanbul with orders to bring him home alive had instead killed the journalist and dismembered his body.

Saudi Arabia's crown prince had no knowledge of the operation, Shaalan al-Shaalan, a spokesman for the prosecutor, said at a news conference in Riyadh, the Saudi capital.

He said that 11 suspects had been indicted and that authorities were seeking the death penalty for five of them. The order to kill Khashoggi, who had criticized the Saudi monarchy over the past year, had come from the leader of the Saudi team in Istanbul, Shaalan said without naming any of the suspects.

...Al-Mojeb's statement on Thursday implicated two higher-level officials in what the prosecutor said was an operation intended either to persuade or force Khashoggi to return to Saudi Arabia.

...The Saudi prosecutor's version of events on Thursday — that Khashoggi was killed during a fight with the Saudi agents, who administered a lethal injection — contradicted the findings of Turkish investigators, who have said Khashoggi was strangled or suffocated soon after he entered the consulate, in a premeditated killing.
The main thrust of the prosecutor's statements seems to be that Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman had nothing to do with it. Left unanswered is why a team dispatched with orders to bring someone home alive would happen to have a bonesaw on hand.

The prosecutor also provided no information on the whereabouts of Khashoggi's remains.

This entire charade is transparent bullshit. I don't know what else to say about it besides that. I remain so sad and so angry for Khashoggi's family, friends, and colleagues. They are not only being denied justice; they are being denied even the truth.

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