Jamal Khashoggi's friends want his body back for a funeral

Saudi Arabia's King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud chats with Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed al Nahyan in Jeddah Saudi Arabia

REUTERS Saudi Press AgencyUAE Warns Against"Destabilizing Saudi Arabia Over Khashoggi Case

"As the Foreign Secretary has said, this was a awful act and those responsible must be held to account".

President Donald Trump dispatched Secretary of State Mike Pompeo earlier this week for hastily convened discussions with Saudi and Turkish officials. Saudi Arabia had been a "great ally in the Middle East", but that "what happened is unacceptable", he added.

The two-star general's position as spokesman made him a household name and he was soon part of the crown prince's inner circle.

Khashoggi went missing on October 2 after entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul to obtain documents needed for his upcoming marriage.

Eighteen Saudi nationals had been arrested, the prosecutor said.

A source with close connections to the Saudi royal palace told CNN that, in the Saudis' determination, Khashoggi's cause of death was a chokehold or strangulation, but officials provided no evidence to support the conclusion.

Turkish officials have accused Riyadh of carrying out a state-sponsored killing and dismembering the body, which police have begun hunting for in an Istanbul forest.

Some U.S. lawmakers were unconvinced by the Saudi account.

Until the death of Saudi journalist in self-imposed exile and frequent critic Jamal Khashoggi in the Saudi embassy in Istanbul this month at the hands of goons in the employ of bin Salman's security services, all this public-relations effort noticeably blunted global pressure against some nasty things he was doing like a catastrophic, brutal war in Yemen or crackdowns on dissent.

Another Republican Senator, Marco Rubio, called for an investigation and sanctions imposed against those responsible. Pro-government newspaper Yeni Safak, citing the audio, said his torturers cut off his fingers during an interrogation and later beheaded him.

Khashoggi reportedly was killed inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 2. He also appeared to accept the kingdom's repeated denials of culpability.

United Nations chief Antonio Guterres in a statement stressed "the need for a prompt, thorough and transparent investigation" and "full accountability for those responsible".

How have Saudi's Western allies reacted?

While Twitter never issued any kind of public alert regarding the extent of the apparent intrusion, the Times report notes that steps were taken.

"This appalling assassination within the grounds of the Consulate amounts to an extrajudicial execution", Amnesty said.

Were his remains to be found, traces of the drug may be found, asking new questions of Saudi Arabia's fist-fight narrative.

The Green Party's foreign affairs spokesperson, Golriz Ghahraman, said information coming out from Turkey and Saudi Arabia could not be relied on.

Riyadh's admission came after persistent claims by the Saudi authorities that the journalist had left the consulate alive.

Khashoggi, who lived in suburban Washington, was a former insider who turned into a critic of the kingdom's direction under Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. He was named deputy chief of foreign intelligence in April 2017.

The official, Leyla Sahin Usta, said it would have been "more valuable" if Saudi officials had earlier admitted that Khashoggi was killed in its diplomatic post. The same month, according to the paper, Twitter also alerted the owners of a few dozen accounts that they may have been targeted. There was a standing order to bring critics of the kingdom back to the country, he added.

The Saudi king also ordered the establishment of a ministerial body under the chairmanship of the crown prince - his son - to restructure the kingdom's intelligence agency and "define its powers precisely", Saudi state media said.

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