Khashoggi 'hit squad' included a forensics expert and a former diplomat

Saudi journalist disappearance ruffles feathers in Washington

Saudi Arabia is also unhappy about Ankara's growing proximity to the kingdom's Shiite rival, Iran.

A veteran journalist, Khashoggi disappeared on October 2 after entering Saudi Arabia's consulate in Istanbul to arrange paperwork for his wedding to Cengiz, a Turk.

She said she waited outside for him to come out and then realized something was wrong around 4 p.m. because the consulate closed at 3:30 p.m. He left Saudi Arabia a year ago saying he feared retribution for his criticism of Riyadh over the Yemen war and its crackdown on dissent, and since then wrote columns for the Washington Post. Saudi officials have denied the report and say they don't know the journalist's whereabouts.

According to Turkish personnel, a 15-man team flew from Saudi Arabia to Istanbul the same day Khashoggi visited the embassy, arriving there through two private planes.

"Is it possible for the Saudi Arabian consulate where the incident occurred not to have camera systems?"

FILE - Saudi dissident Jamal Khashoggi speaks at an event hosted by Middle East Monitor in London, Sept. 29, 2018.

Maria Fernanda Espinosa, who heads the UN General Assembly, supports "an independent and impartial investigation" into Khashoggi's disappearance, her spokeswoman Monica Villela Grayly said. "We're demanding everything. We want to see what's going on there", he said.

Since the disappearance of Khashoggi, activists and journalists have gathered by the Saudi consulate in Istanbul nearly every day in the last week to rally in support of the missing writer.

"Mere words are not enough evidence" to dispute the allegations that Khashoggi had been killed, Erdogan said on Monday.

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"There's some pretty bad stories about it", Trump added.

Leman Yurtsever, a protest organiser and board member of the Human Rights Association in Turkey, said on Tuesday that they gathered by the diplomatic mission to defend the rights and safety of journalists.

"We call for cooperation between Turkey and Saudi Arabia to conduct a prompt and impartial investigation into the circumstances of Mr Khashoggi's disappearance and to make the findings public", United Nations human rights spokeswoman Ravina Shamdasani told a Geneva news briefing.

Erdogan had said on Sunday that authorities still expect a positive outcome in Khashoggi's disappearance, noting that he is waiting for the results of investigations on the disappearance of the Saudi journalist.

Trump visited Saudi Arabia on his first worldwide trip as president and announced $110 billion in proposed arms sales to the country.

Treading softly, the United States is asking its major ally Saudi Arabia to investigate the odd disappearance of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, an avowed and vocal foe of the Saud family that rules the country.

The Turkish government is looking into Khashoggi's disappearance.

Khashoggi is a Washington Post columnist and former general manager and editor-in-chief of Al Arab News Channel.

Cengiz urged Saudi Arabia, "especially King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, to show the same level of sensitivity and release CCTV footage from the consulate".

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