The Arabic-language al-Waqt news website quoted informed sources as saying that bin Salman had assigned the deputy head of Saudi Arabia’s al-Mukhabarat al-A’amah and the former spokesman for the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen Ahmed al-Asiri with the mission to execute Khashoggi.
The source added that the decision to kill Khashoggi was made while ago after efforts failed to return him home.
According to the report, al-Asiri was one of the two options to do the mission, and was assigned to the vitally sensitive mission because of his close ties with the Saudi crown prince. Another military officer who had lots of experience in dealing with dissidents was the second candidate for the mission.
Turkish officials said they had concrete evidence missing Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi was murdered, with a friend of the prominent writer saying they think he might have been dismembered.
A contributor to The Washington Post, Khashoggi has not been seen since Tuesday last week, when he entered the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, Turkey, to collect papers for his upcoming wedding.
Saudi officials said he left shortly afterwards but his fiancee, who was waiting outside, said he never came out.
Khashoggi, 59, who was once close to the Saudi royal family and has served as an adviser for senior Saudi officials, left the country last year to live in the US in self-imposed exile, saying he feared retribution for his criticism of Saudi policy in the Yemen war and its crackdown on dissent.
Turan Kislakci, a friend of Khashoggi and the head of the Turkish-Arab Media Association, said that Turkish officials said the journalist has been brutally murdered.
“What was explained to us is this: ‘He was killed, make your funeral preparations’,” Kislakci said.
“We called a few other places, these are lower officials, but they said: ‘We have evidence he was killed in a barbaric way, we will announce it tomorrow or the day after’.”
Kislakci also alleged, based on conversations with officials he did not name, that Khashoggi was made to “faint”, then was dismembered.