Turkish prosecutor demands arrest warrants for 2 Saudis over Khashoggi killing

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Outside view of the official residence of Consul General of Saudi Arabia as the waiting continues on the disappearance of Prominent Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, in Istanbul, Turkey on October 18, 2018. Turkish and Saudi Arabian officials started joint investigation of case of missing journalist Jamal Khashoggi. Officials from a joint Turkish-Saudi team completed an investigation into the case early Thursday after searching the Saudi consul general's official residence as well as the Saudi consulate building in Istanbul. AFP PHOTO

A Turkish prosecutor is seeking arrest warrants from a local court for two Saudi nationals close to Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman over the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, the Hürriyet Daily News reported.

The İstanbul Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office filed an application on Wednesday to obtain the warrants for Maj. Gen. Ahmad al-Assiri and Saud el-Qahtani, described in court documents as being “among the planners” of the murder of The Washington Post contributor.

The court application said there is “strong suspicion” the two aides were involved in planning the killing.

Turkey has been seeking to extradite 18 suspects, including 15 members of the alleged assassination squad.

Saudi Arabia had detained 21 people and says it is seeking the death penalty for five.

Assiri and Qahtani were reportedly suspended from their jobs but face no criminal charges.

“The prosecution’s move to issue arrest warrants for Assiri and Qahtani reflects the view that the Saudi authorities won’t take formal action against those individuals,” Reuters quoted one Turkish official as saying on Thursday.

A critic of the Saudi administration, Khashoggi, whose body is still missing, was murdered on Oct. 2 after he entered Saudi Consulate General in İstanbul.

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