The heartbreaking last words of murdered Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi have been revealed

The heartbreaking last words of murdered Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi have been revealed

A transcript of a harrowing audio recording has revealed the last words spoken by deceased Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Khashoggi's possible murder by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman created shockwaves around the globe, and has made relations between Saudi Arabia and its longtime ally the United States extremely tense. Khashoggi had been a longtime critic of the royal family, and had been forced to flee the country as a result of his outspoken claims. However, things came to a head earlier this year.

On October 2, 2018, Khashoggi entered the Saudi Arabian consulate in Istanbul in Turkey. He did not leave the building alive. News reports soon spread throughout the country, claiming that he had met with a gruesome fate. On October 15, the consulate was inspected by Turkish officials, who found evidence of 'tampering' during the inspection and believed that Khashoggi had been tortured and violently assassinated by the government.

An image of Jamal Khashoggi. Credit: Getty

However, transcript of the torture and killing of Khashoggi was later leaked to the press, and now the chilling details of the editor and writer's brutal dismemberment have been made public. According to the tape, Khashoggi's final words were: "I can't breathe," repeated three times before he expired as a result of his injuries.

Last month, Turkish foreign minister Mevlut Cavusoglu stated that he listened to the recording, and believes that the killing was an act of premeditated murder. What's more, he believes that Khashoggi's killers took sadistic satisfaction from his death. Cavusoglu stated:

"It was premeditated murder ... It can be heard how the forensics expert instructs the others: they should listen to music while he cuts up the body. One notices how he enjoys it."

The government of Saudi Arabia officially denied any involvement in Khashoggi's death. However, on October 20 they admitted that he was actually killed within the consulate. At that point, the official story was that he had been strangled to death after a fight had broken out.

An image of Jamal Khashoggi. Credit: Getty

On 16 November 2018 various news outlets learned that, according to a report by the CIA, it was deemed most likely that Prince Mohammed bin Salman had indeed ordered the hit. On 15 November 2018, the Saudi prosecutor's office indicted and charged eleven Saudi nationals with the murder and torture of Khashoggi, and claimed that that five of them will be executed as punishment.

The response from the international community has been one of mass condemnation, and as a result, Germany, Norway and Denmark have frozen sale of arms to Saudi Arabia. President Donald Trump has not agreed to place any sanctions on Saudi Arabia for the time being, something which a number of pundits criticised.

Former National Security Adviser Susan Rice wrote in The New York Times:

"As this litany of lunacy shows, Prince Mohammed is not and can no longer be viewed as a reliable or rational partner of the United States and our allies ... President Trump’s inexplicable infatuation with Prince Mohammed must end, and he must recalibrate American policy so that it serves our national interests — not his personal interests or those of the crown prince."