Saudi journalist goes missing in Istanbul

Published October 4, 2018
Jamal Khashoggi during a press conference in the Bahraini capital Manama, on December 15, 2014. — AFP
Jamal Khashoggi during a press conference in the Bahraini capital Manama, on December 15, 2014. — AFP

ISTANBUL: A prominent Saudi journalist critical of Riyadh was still missing on Wednesday 24 hours after he entered the kingdom’s consulate in Istanbul, with his fiancée anxiously waiting for news and US officials investigating his case.

Jamal Khashoggi, who writes opinion pieces for The Washington Post, has not been seen since entering the Saudi consulate building on Tuesday where he was to receive an official document for the couple’s marriage.

Khashoggi, a former government adviser who went into self-imposed exile in the United States last year to avoid possible arrest, has been critical of some policies of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and Riyadh’s intervention in the war in Yemen.

A senior Turkish official said the Saudi journalist was still being held at the consulate. “According to in­­formation we have, this individual who is a Saudi nat­i­o­nal is still at the Istanbul consulate of Saudi Arabia,” presidential spokesman Ibra­­­­him Kalin told a news conference.

He said the Turkish foreign ministry and police were closely monitoring the case, adding that Ankara was in touch with Saudi officials. “I hope it will be resolved peacefully,” he said.

Khashoggi’s Turkish fiancée has been waiting outside the consulate since Wednesday morning.

“I haven’t received any news from him since 1pm (1000 GMT) on Tuesday,” said 36-year-old Hatice, as she stood outside the barricades around the building.

She said Khashoggi had gone to the consulate to obtain documents for their own marriage to prove he was not married.

The US State Department said it was investigating the matter.

Khashoggi is one of the rare Saudi journalists to raise his voice against repression in the country. In one of his last tweets, he criticised the lawsuit filed against a Saudi economist, Essam al-Zamel, after his arrest by Saudi authorities.

Published in Dawn, October 4th , 2018

Opinion

Israeli flashpoint
Updated 12 May 2021

Israeli flashpoint

There are persistent reports from the US suggesting that the mood over unquestioning backing for Israel is shifting.
Blaming envoys for the mess
Updated 12 May 2021

Blaming envoys for the mess

The prime minister appeared to be using his container approach in the realm of foreign policy.
No entry, no Eid
12 May 2021

No entry, no Eid

On this Eid, amid this mess, many chairs at muted celebratory meals will remain empty.
Election night confusion
Updated 11 May 2021

Election night confusion

Poll manipulation in Pakistan occurs in the run-up to elections and on election day itself.

Editorial

PM’s Saudi visit
Updated 12 May 2021

PM’s Saudi visit

It is very important that Pakistan take no step, or agree to any demand, that can have an adverse effect on national sovereignty.
12 May 2021

A new intifada?

THE situation in the occupied territories over the past few days has been incendiary, with tensions boiling over as...
Updated 12 May 2021

SOP violations

ON Monday, Sindh Police officials were given a well-deserved slap on the wrist by a judicial magistrate in Karachi...
11 May 2021

Kabul massacre

AFGHANISTAN is a land that has seen plenty of massacres during decades of unrest. However, despite this almost...
Divisive move
Updated 11 May 2021

Divisive move

The whole point of these reforms is to ensure that all major political stakeholders are on board, and that there is a consensus.
11 May 2021

Bank loan concerns

THE combined gross non-performing loan portfolio of the country’s banks and DFIs increased marginally by 2.6pc or...