'They will pay the price,' Recep Tayyip Erdogan hits out at Saudi Arabia after UN report blames kingdom for Jamal Khashoggi's murder

Istanbul: Shortly upon the release of a UN report regarding Jamal Khashoggi's killing, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Wednesday said that late journalist's killers "will pay the price." "(They will) pay the price and be held accountable," Anadolu Agency quoted Erdogan as saying during an event in Istanbul.

 They will pay the price, Recep Tayyip Erdogan hits out at Saudi Arabia after UN report blames kingdom for Jamal Khashoggis murder

File image of Turkish president Tayyip Erdogan. Reuters

Khashoggi, who worked as a journalist for The Washington Post, was killed after entering Saudi Arabia's consulate in October 2018. Even though Riyadh has outrightly rejected all allegations against it, Erdogan added that the kingdom was guilty and had prior knowledge of the murder, as per the Turkish news agency.

An independent investigation led by the UN extrajudicial executions investigator, Agnes Callamard, held Saudi Arabia responsible for the scribe's "extrajudicial killing." The report released on Wednesday revealed that the late Saudi Arabian journalist was the victim of a "deliberate, premeditated execution," according to CNN. The Kingdom has dismissed the report.

While Riyadh initially denied any knowledge of Khashoggi's killing, Saudi officials later claimed that a group of rogue operators, many of whom belong to Saudi crown prince Mohammed bin Salman's inner circle, were responsible for the journalist's death. The Saudi attorney general later confirmed that Khashoggi was killed in a premeditated murder. The special rapporteur, however, does not make any conclusions over the role of the Saudi crown prince and king in the murder case.

Instead, Callamard says that there is "credible evidence meriting further investigation by a proper authority" as to whether the "threshold of criminal responsibility has been met."Saudi Arabia began the trial for 11 suspects in the murder case earlier this year, after rejecting Erdogan's call for the suspected Saudi nationals to be extradited to Turkey to face trial in the nation where the crime took place.

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Updated Date: Jun 20, 2019 11:14:32 IST