After two weeks of denials and pressure from the international community, Saudi Arabia has finally confirmed the death of Jamal Khashoggi, the prominent journalist of Saudi Arabia. According to the country’s state TV, Jamal Khashoggi was killed in a fight in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul. The state TV has also told that the deputy intelligence chief Ahmad al-Assiri and Saud al-Qahtani, senior aide to Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman have also been dismissed over the affair.

According to the Saudi Attorney General Sheikh Saud al-Mojeb, Khashoggi died after “discussions” at the consulate devolved into an altercation.

Discussions that took place between him and the persons who met him … at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul led to a brawl and a fist fight with the
citizen, Jamal Khashoggi, which led to his death, may his soul rest in peace

Saudi Attorney General Sheikh Saud al-Mojeb

Source: Aljazeera

However, no clue or explanation has been given about where the dead body of Jamal Khashoggi is. 

Khashoggi used to writer columns for The Washington Post and wrote critically of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s (MBS) rise to power. On October 2 he entered the Saudi consulate in Istanbul to obtain documents needed for his upcoming marriage and since then was missing. 

On October 3, Turkish government announced that Mr Khashoggi was missing, thought to be in the consulate whereas the Saudi Arabia declared that Khashoggi left the embassy. 

There was a lot of pressure on Saudi kingdom from the international community to explain Mr Khashoggi’s disappearance. The Turkish officials had insisted that he was deliberately killed inside the consulate whereas Saudi Arabia strongly denied any kind of involvement in the incidence.

Reaction of the US

The initial reaction of Mr. Donald Trump was severe and he said there would be “very severe” consequences if Saudi Arabia was proved to have killed the journalist. However, after the confirmation from the Saudi Arabia about the death of the journalist, Mr. Trump praised the Kingdom’s quick actions and said Kingdom is a strong Ally of the US and any sanctions on it would have effect on US economy.

I would prefer, if there is going to be some form of sanction or what we may determine to do, if anything … that we don’t use as retribution cancelling $110bn worth of work, which means 600,000 jobs

Said Donald Trump

Meanwhile, the White House, in a seperate statement said the US was “deeply saddened” to hear confirmation of Mr Khashoggi’s death.