Turkish police raid villa in search of Khashoggi's remains

Turkish police raid villa in search of Khashoggi's remains

Turkish police on Monday raided a villa outside of Istanbul as part of the search for the remains of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, who was killed at the Saudi Arabian Consulate in Istanbul last month.

The Washington Post, citing Turkish state-run news agency Anadolu, reported that investigators zeroed in on the property southeast of Istanbul after intelligence showed that one of the Saudis allegedly involved in Khashoggi's killing had contacted the property owner a day before the incident.

A Turkish official told the state news agency that the individual, Mansour Othman M. Abahussain, called the owner — who is a Saudi national — of a large "farm" outside Istanbul on Oct. 1. Authorities did not specify what the two men discussed, but Khashoggi was last seen entering the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul on Oct. 2.

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The Post reported that photos of Monday's raid depicted police officers standing outside the villa, with drones and dogs also being used to search the area.

Previous reports indicated that investigators believed Khashoggi's body was dismembered and dissolved in acid. His remains have not been found since he was last seen on Oct. 2.

President TrumpDonald John TrumpPompeo changes staff for Russia meeting after concerns raised about top negotiator's ties: report House unravels with rise of 'Les Enfants Terrible' Ben Carson: Trump is not a racist and his comments were not racist MORE has drawn criticism from Democrats and Republicans alike for his decision not to dole out additional punishment against Saudi Arabia or Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in connection with Khashoggi's death.

The CIA has reportedly concluded that the crown prince ordered Khashoggi's killing. Trump on Thanksgiving sought to push back on that, asserting that the agency did not come to a conclusion, but may "have feelings certain ways."

He has argued economic and diplomatic ties between the two countries outweigh the need for heavier sanctions following Khashoggi's killing.

The administration has thus far sanctioned 17 Saudis for their alleged roles in Khashoggi's death, and revoked U.S. visas for some officials deemed responsible for the incident.