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Missing Saudi journalist’s family deny any knowledge of fiancé

Missing Saudi journalist’s family deny any knowledge of fiancé

Jamal Khashoggi’s family spoke to the Saudi media nearly a week after his disappearance at the kingdom’s consulate in Istanbul

Family members of missing Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi have reportedly denied any knowledge of a Turkish woman who says she is his fiancé.

Khashoggi disappeared last Tuesday after entering Saudi Arabia’s consulate in Istanbul. Turkish authorities claim he may have been killed inside the consulate before his body was moved elsewhere.

Saudi officials deny the allegations and say they are assisting with the investigation.

Read: Saudi source denies journalist Khashoggi was killed at consulate in Istanbul

The former editor of the kingdom’s Al Watan newspaper had been living in Washington DC for more than a year prior to his disappearance.

He said authorities had warned him to stop tweeting but he continued writing regular columns for the Washington Post.

Reuters said Khashoggi’s Turkish fiancée raised the alarm after waiting for hours outside the consulate for him to finish an appointment to get divorce documentation so he could remarry.

Read: Saudi says working with Turkey to investigate journalist’s disappearance

However, Saudi broadcaster Al Arabiya cited Khashoggi’s eldest son Salah as saying the family was unaware of the woman, reported to be Hatice Cengiz.

“I do not know this woman and I have never heard of her except through the media,” he was quoted as saying, adding she should stop meddling in the case.

Salah went on to denounce any attempts to politicise the disappearance, which has raised tensions between Saudi Arabia and Turkey at a time when ties are already frayed by the latter’s support for Qatar during the current Saudi-led boycott of the country.

“The issue is that there is a Saudi citizen who has gone missing,” Khashoggi’s son was quoted as saying. “We are cooperating with the Saudi authorities to uncover the circumstances.”

He went on to say the case was a personal matter and his family was searching for “credible information”.

“We are his family and we inquire about the circumstances of his disappearance and the search for him.”

He added that his family supported the Saudi investigation, but admitted he was unaware of his father’s trip to Turkey and had last spoken to him when he was still in Washington.

“I had no idea of his presence in Turkey and his recent trip,” he told Al Arabiya.

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