Canada leader Trudeau confirms existence of Khashoggi murder recording

Canada leader Trudeau confirms existence of Khashoggi murder recording

2 min read
12 November, 2018
Canada's prime minister became the first Western leader to acknowledge the existence of a recording of the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
Erdogan has accused the "highest levels" of the Saudi government with ordering the hit [Getty]

Canada's prime minister has become the first Western leader to acknowledge the existence of a recording of the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Justin Trudeau made the comments at a press conference in Paris on Monday, Canadian state media reported.

"Canada has been fully briefed up on what Turkey had to share," Trudeau said.

He added that the Canadian intelligence officials have listened to the recording but that he has not personally heard it.

The development comes after Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said he had given the "tapes" to Riyadh, Washington and other capitals.

"We gave the recordings, we gave them to Saudi Arabia, we gave them to Washington, to the Germans, to the French, to the English," he said in a televised speech.

"They listened to the conversations which took place here, they know," he said.

The Canadian leader is the first since that announcement to officially confirm that his country's intelligence has heard the audio.

Some Turkish media and officials have said Ankara possessed an audio recording of the murder and it had shared it with the head of the CIA Gina Haspel when she visited Turkey in late October.

But the existence of such a recording has not been officially confirmed until now. It has not been revealed how the audio was recorded.

On Sunday, a Turkish journalist revealed the last words of Khashoggi that were reportedly documented in the unpublished audio recording.

"I'm suffocating... take this bag off my head, I'm claustrophobic," Nazif Karaman said Khashoggi's final words were inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul.

Khashoggi was last seen entering the consulate on 2 October to obtain documents for his forthcoming marriage.

After repeated denials, Saudi Arabia finally admitted the 59-year-old had been murdered at the mission in a "rogue" operation.

However, Erdogan has accused the "highest levels" of the Saudi government with ordering the hit, while some officials have pointed the finger at the all-powerful Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.