Erdogan slams US ‘silence’ over Khashoggi, demands Saudi answers

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has lashed out at the United States for not taking a tougher position against Saudi Arabia over the murder of Jamal Khashoggi, as he demanded answers from the kingdom over the journalist's killing.

"I cannot understand America's silence when such a horrific attack took place, and even after members of the CIA listened to the recordings we provided," Erdogan said in an interview aired by state broadcaster TRT on Sunday.

"We want everything to be clarified because there is an atrocity, there is a murder," he added, calling the killing "not an ordinary one." 

Erdogan has long insisted that the order to kill Khashoggi at the kingdom's consulate in Istanbul four months ago came from the highest levels of the Saudi government.

In the interview, Erdogan said the murder was planned by 22 people, 15 of whom arrived in Istanbul on two planes and visited the consulate on the day of the killing.

"What they [Saudi Arabia] say is '22 people are arrested now'. Despite this, we have some information. They might have taken some of them out. They might be victims of traffic accidents. Because the system there is working very weird," he said.

Last month, a trial opened in Riyadh of 11 defendants over the killing, including five people facing the death penalty. Several rights groups and international observers, however, have said it lacked credibility.

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