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Turkish officials say a journalist was murdered inside a Saudi consulate

Unnamed Turkish officials have told multiple news outlets they believe Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, who has been critical of the regime in Riyadh, was killed inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul.

"The initial assessment of the Turkish police is that Mr. Khashoggi has been killed at the consulate of Saudi Arabia in Istanbul," one official told NBC News on Saturday. "We believe that the murder was premeditated and the body was subsequently moved out of the consulate."

The claim has not been independently confirmed. Saudi Arabian state media "strongly denounced these baseless allegations," and Saudi officials said Khashoggi left the consulate of his own volition and went to an unknown location.

"When I speak of the fear, intimidation, arrests, and public shaming of intellectuals and religious leaders who dare to speak their minds, and then I tell you that I'm from Saudi Arabia, are you surprised?" Khashoggi wrote in a 2017 column for The Washington Post. "I can speak when so many cannot. I want you to know that Saudi Arabia has not always been as it is now. We Saudis deserve better."