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UN calls for ‘credible’ probe into Khashoggi murder

At conference in Saudi Arabia’s Gulf rival Qatar, world body’s chief Antonio Guterres calls it ‘essential’ that Saudi journalist’s killers be punished

In this photo taken on December 15, 2014, Jamal Khashoggi looks on at a press conference in the Bahraini capital Manama. (AFP/Mohammed Al-Shaikh)
In this photo taken on December 15, 2014, Jamal Khashoggi looks on at a press conference in the Bahraini capital Manama. (AFP/Mohammed Al-Shaikh)

DOHA, Qatar — UN chief Antonio Guterres called Sunday for a “credible” probe into journalist Jamal Khashoggi’s murder in Saudi Arabia’s consulate in Istanbul.

“It is absolutely essential to have a credible investigation and to have the punishment of those that were guilty,” Guterres said at a conference in Doha.

The UN chief said he had no information on the case except what had been reported in the media.

Khashoggi, a Saudi contributor to the Washington Post, was killed on October 2 shortly after entering the kingdom’s consulate in what Riyadh called a “rogue” operation.

Saudi Arabia has repeatedly rejected Turkish demands to extradite suspects connected to the murder of the journalist, a critic of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

Turkey’s foreign minister said Saturday that his country would “not give up” on establishing the truth about the murder.

United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres speaks to reporters ahead of the UN Migration Conference in the Moroccan city of Marrakesh on December 9, 2018. (Fadel Senna/AFP)

“We haven’t received any new information or outcome of the investigation from the Saudi side,” Mevlut Cavusoglu said, also in Qatar, which has been the target of a Saudi-led boycott since June 2017.

“Turkey will not give up on this, we will go to the end.”

Earlier this month, the minister said Turkey was in talks over a possible United Nations investigation into the killing which has provoked global outrage.

According to Turkey, a 15-member Saudi team was sent to Istanbul to kill Khashoggi, a palace insider turned critic of the regime.

Riyadh has since detained 21 people over the murder.

Despite speculation that the powerful crown prince ordered the hit, the kingdom has strongly denied he was involved.

The murder has damaged Riyadh’s international reputation, and Western countries including the United States, France and Canada have placed sanctions on nearly 20 Saudi nationals.

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