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New twist in Khashoggi mystery: MbS spoke to journalist moments before his death, report claims

A new report has claimed that Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman phoned Jamal Khashoggi and tried to convince him to return to Riyadh, shortly before the dissident journalist was killed in the kingdom’s Istanbul consulate.

Turkish pro-government newspaper Yeni Safak, reported on Sunday, citing its own sources, that the prince contacted Khashoggi shortly after he was detained inside the consulate.

According to the paper, Mohammad bin Salman, known in the West by his initials MBS, attempted to convince the journalist over the phone to return to his homeland, Saudi Arabia.

Once close with the Saudi elites, Khashoggi fled the kingdom last year in fear of possible prosecution.

However, the journalist was said to have declined the prince’s offer to fly to Riyadh, thinking he would be arrested and killed there, and was then murdered by the Saudi hit-team after the talk with MBS ended, the paper wrote.

More than two weeks have passed since Khashoggi disappeared after entering the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul, Turkey. Saudi officials claim that he was killed in a “fist fight” which broke out in the consulate building. A narrative which most countries of the world have deemed unsatisfactory.

The officials have yet to provide details on the incident and are still determining where Khashoggi’s body is.

Earlier while speaking to FoxNews, Saudi Arabia Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir had stated that Khashoggi’s death was a “tremendous mistake” and MBS was “not aware” of his killing.

Meanwhile, Turkey is conducting a separate investigation into the case. Ankara insists that the Saudis had planned to murder the journalist and dispatched an assassination squad to take him out. Turkish leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan vowed to reveal further details soon.

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