A trial for the murder of journalist Jamal Khashogg has begun in Istanbul, Turkey, on Friday. The accused, twenty Saudi Arabians, are not present at the trial. They are suspected of killing Khashogg and cutting off his body in 2018. The body has never been found.
The defendants have been issued with arrest warrants, but they are probably all in Saudi Arabia.
The death is suspected to have taken place at the Saudi Arabian consulate in Istanbul, where Khashoggi, who became known as a critic of the Saudi regime, had gone to get the documents he needed for the marriage.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has said that the order to kill Khashoggi came from Saudi Arabia’s top leadership, but has never directly blamed it on Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.
In Saudi Arabia, a trial was held in camera last year, in which five defendants were sentenced to death. Their names have not been made public.
Khashogg's sons later announced that they would forgive the murder work, which means the death sentences are unlikely to be carried out. Saudi Arabia’s official explanation is that the killers are operating on their own.