Saudi journalist may have recorded his own torture and death

People hold signs during a protest at the Embassy of Saudi Arabia about the disappearance of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, Wednesday, Oct. 10, 2018, in Washington.
(Image credit: Jacquelyn Martin/The Associated Press)

Turkish security officials have reportedly obtained audio and video recordings proving missing journalist Jamal Khashoggi was murdered last week inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul — and the audio files may have been recorded by Khashoggi himself.

The journalist activated the recording function on his Apple watch before entering the consulate, a Turkish newspaper reported Saturday, citing "reliable sources in a special intelligence department." Khashoggi's "interrogation, torture, and killing were audio recorded and sent to both his phone and to iCloud," the report says. Some files were deleted from the watch, the paper noted, but only after the sync completed.

Some tech experts have expressed skepticism that Turkish authorities could have obtained recordings from Khashoggi's watch without access to the watch itself. The device usually needs to be within a certain proximity of a linked iPhone to upload content to the cloud. Also questionable is the paper's report that Saudi interrogators could have unlocked the watch using Khashoggi's fingerprint, as that is not a capability Apple's product description mentions.

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Saudi Arabia has denied involvement in Khashoggi's disappearance.

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Bonnie Kristian

Bonnie Kristian was a deputy editor and acting editor-in-chief of She is a columnist at Christianity Today and author of Untrustworthy: The Knowledge Crisis Breaking Our Brains, Polluting Our Politics, and Corrupting Christian Community (forthcoming 2022) and A Flexible Faith: Rethinking What It Means to Follow Jesus Today (2018). Her writing has also appeared at Time Magazine, CNN, USA Today, Newsweek, the Los Angeles Times, and The American Conservative, among other outlets.