Jamal Khashoggi: photos of 15-man ‘assassination squad’ surface in Turkish newspaper

Hatice Cengiz, the Turkish fiancée of missing Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi and her friends wait in front of the Saudi consulate in Istanbul Turkey

Turkish officials suspect Khashoggi was killed at the Saudi consulate, allegations rejected by Saudi Arabia, which says he left the premises.

"I think the United States of America stands ready to assist in any way", Pence said.

The search will take place as part of the official investigation, which was being conducted "in an intense manner", he said without giving any date.

Khashoggi, a Saudi national who fled his country past year for fear of political repression, had been a vocal critic of Salman's crackdown on political dissent and the Saudi military's conduct in the Yemen civil war.

Activists, members of the Human Rights Association Istanbul branch, holding posters with photos of missing Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, talk to members of the media, during a protest in his support near the Saudi Arabia consulate in Istanbul, Tuesday, Oct. 9, 2018.

The Sabah newspaper, which is close to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, revealed the identities of what it called a "mysterious" 15-member "assassination squad" it said was involved in Khashoggi's alleged death.

Media captionCCTV footage shows missing Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul.

The kingdom did not respond to requests for comment Wednesday. The footage shows Khashoggi entering the consulate on October 2. However, he has not been seen for more than a week, and the only closed-circuit television footage that's been released shows him entering the building but not departing.

In a column published Wednesday in the Washington Post, where Khashoggi was a contributing writer, his fiancee, Hatice Cengiz, said despite the crackdown on dissidents in Saudi Arabia, he didn't think anything would happen to him when he returned to the consulate in Turkey after an initial meeting on September 28.

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Police and investigators in Turkey typically release video and information through state-run or otherwise government-friendly media outlets, as opposed to holding briefings like those common in Western nations.

In Istanbul, Khashoggi met his fiancee, Hatice Cengiz, a PhD student who had met Khashoggi at a seminar.

The kingdom is already under pressure amid growing worldwide concern for the writer. He later returned October 2 after being promised the necessary paperwork so the two could be married.

He has been critical of some policies of the Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and Riyadh's intervention in the war in Yemen.

Khashoggi's fiance has asked US President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump to "help shed light" on his disappearance.

In his first column for the newspaper, Mr Khashoggi said that he feared being arrested in an apparent crackdown on dissent overseen by the prince since he became first in line to succeed his father King Salman earlier that year.

Mr Trump, who took his first overseas trip as U.S. president to the kingdom and whose son-in-law Jared Kushner has close ties to Prince Mohammed, said he had not yet talked to the Saudis about Khashoggi.

Embassies and consulates under the Vienna Convention are technically foreign soil and must be protected by host nations.

"Violence against journalists is going up and is a grave threat to freedom of expression", he said.

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