The London-based Middle East Eye (MEE) reported earlier this week that Turkish investigators have an audio and possibly even a video recording of the torture and murder of Washington Post contributor and Saudi critic Jamal Khashoggi.
I didn't necessarily feel comfortable vouching for the veracity of a report from an outlet that I'm not very familiar with, but the Washington Post has now confirmed that report.
The Washington Post reports that Turkish officials told American officials that they have recordings.
The audio recording in particular provides some of the most persuasive and gruesome evidence that the Saudi team is responsible for Khashoggi’s death, the officials said.
“The voice recording from inside the embassy lays out what happened to Jamal after he entered,” said one person with knowledge of the recording who, like others, spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss highly sensitive intelligence.
“You can hear his voice and the voices of men speaking Arabic,” this person said. “You can hear how he was interrogated, tortured and then murdered.”
A second person briefed on the recording said men could be heard beating Khashoggi.
Middle East Eye reported that Turkish investigators recovered the recordings from the Apple Watch that Khashoggi was wearing at the time of his murder. The watch was reportedly synched to the iPhone that he left with his fiancee outside the consulate.
The Washington Post has not confirmed that particular detail, but it's as good of an explanation as any. It's also possible the Saudi consulate was bugged in some way and the Apple Watch story is deliberate misinformation.
In either case, it seems there's no denying that Khashoggi was killed in the consulate. He is definitely dead.
Even if these recordings are released to the public at some point, I don't know if that will be enough to separate Trump and his son-in-law Jared Kushner from their best buddy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.
The Washington Post also reported last night that one of the 15 Saudi agents dispatched to Turkey to deal with Khashoggi was an expert at quickly chopping up bodies.