Report: CIA has evidence Saudi prince ordered journalist's death

Turkish newspaper says CIA director hinted espionage agency had recording incriminating Saudi Crown Prince in journalist's killing.

Tzvi Lev ,

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman

A new report says that the CIA possesses a recording of Saudi Arabian Crown Prince Muhamed Bin Salman ordering slain journalist Jamal Khashoggi to be "silenced".

According to Turkey's Hurriyet Daily News, CIA Director Gina Haspel had hinted during a visit to Ankara in October that the CIA had a recording in which the Saudi prince is heard ordering Khashoggi to be killed.

The conversation was allegedly intercepted by CIA wiretapping.

The Turkish government has accused Saudi Arabia of murdering the dissident journalist, who was last seen entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 2, and chopping his body into pieces.

Saudi Arabia admitted for the first time several weeks ago that Khashoggi was killed after entering the consulate in Istanbul, after previously denying Turkish claims that he was murdered. At the same time, the Saudi leadership claimed Khashoggi was killed in a “rogue” operation.

Turkish officials say Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman was involved in Khashoggi's death and perhaps ordered it. A report earlier this month claimed the CIA has concluded the crown prince ordered the killing, but on Saturday, the State Department clarified the government was still working on determining responsibility for the death of Khashoggi.

Khashoggi's body has never been found, more than a month after he was killed.

The case has strained relations between Saudi Arabia and the West. US President Donald Trump derided the killing as "one of the worst cover-ups" in history.

The United States later revoked the visas of 21 Saudi nationals implicated in the crime.