Saudi Arabia’s consul general in Istanbul has been sacked and will be investigated after the disappearance of a journalist, according to Saudi media reports.
It comes as an audio recording emerged of the alleged torture and murder of missing Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
Sky special correspondent Alex Crawford says she was told by a “very well placed” source that a conversation between Saudi consul general Mohammed al-Otaibi and Mr Khashoggi can be heard on the recording, after which there was “a beating”.
The source said the recording later reveals the journalist was “drugged” and “killed”, before a Saudi forensics expert told others to put in headphones and listen to music while he took seven minutes to dismember the body.
Mr Khashoggi, a US resident and critic of the Saudi regime, has been missing since 2 October when he visited the Saudi embassy in Istanbul to obtain documents needed to get married.
On Tuesday, Mr al-Otaibi reportedly left Turkey hours after it was announced his official residence would be searched in connection with the journalist’s disappearance.
It comes as Turkish newspaper, Sabah, published the names and CCTV pictures of 15 men who allegedly made a one-day trip to Istanbul on the day the Washington Post writer disappeared.
One of the men appears to be Maher Abdulaziz Mutreb, a regular member of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s entourage and thought to be a bodyguard.
Another pictured is reportedly forensic expert Dr Salah Muhammed al Tubaigy.