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Saudi Arabia Seeks Death Penalty for 5 Suspects in Killing of Jamal Khashoggi

Saudi Arabia announced Thursday that 11 suspects have been indicted, with prosecutors requesting the death penalty against five of them in the killing of columnist Jamal Khashoggi last month in Istanbul.


Khashoggi's killers had planned the murder on Sept. 29, three days before the Washington Post columnist disappeared during a visit to the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul, Saudi Al-Mojeb said in a rare press conference. At least 21 people in total were in custody.

Former Saudi deputy intelligence chief Ahmad al-Assiri was the highest-level official behind the killing, the prosecutor said. He was fired for allegedly ordering Khashoggi to return to the consulate. (

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has charged that the orders to kill Khashoggi came from “the highest levels of the Saudi government,” but he never went as far as to name anyone.


Others have argued it’s hard to believe the killing would have taken place without Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman's knowledge. 

Earlier this week it was reported that a member of the hit team told someone over the phone shortly after the murder to “tell your boss” the operation had been completed. 

Deputy Public Prosecutor Shalaan bin Rajih Shalaan later denied Salman was aware of the killing, saying investigations "revealed that the person who ordered the killing was the head of the negotiations team" and MBS "did not have any knowledge about it."

This breaking news post will be updated with additional information. 

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