Turkish prosecutors ask to move Jamal Khashoggi trial to Saudi Arabia


March 31 (UPI) — Turkish prosecutors investigating the death of late Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi requested on Thursday to move the trial to Saudi Arabia, where the suspects are believed to be.

Erol Onderoglu, the Turkish representative for Reporters Without Borders who attended the criminal hearing in Istanbul, said prosecutors asked to stop the trial in lieu of the move. The court then turned the request over to Turkey’s Ministry of Justice for a response.


Prosecutors made a note of missing defendants and said attempts to capture them through Interpol had brought empty results. Turkish authorities have put 26 Saudis on trial in absentia, including two close to Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

Saudi Arabia said its trial, which was done in secret, was complete and no further court action is needed. Eight people were sentenced from seven to 20 years over Khashoggi’s death, but none have been publicly named.

Hatice Cengiz, Khashoggi’s fiancee at the time of his death, expressed the challenge facing Turkey’s justice ministry.

“It is an exemplary situation in terms of showing the dilemma facing humanity in the modern era,” Cengiz said on Twitter after the hearing. “Which of the two will we choose? To want to live like a virtuous human being or to build a life by holding material interests above all kinds of values. #justiceforjamal.”


Khashoggi died Oct. 2, 2018, after visiting the Saudi consulate in Istanbul to pick up documents related to his pending marriage. A months-long investigation into his disappearance determined he was dismembered inside the consulate.