The BBC published on Monday an off-air conversation of last interview with disappeared Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
The interview was conducted three days before Khashoggi’s disappearance, when he was in London for a conference, the BBC said.
“We wouldn’t normally broadcast an off-air conversation, but we’ve decided to make an exception, in light of the current circumstances,” the British broadcaster said in a note published with the recording.
Khashoggi said in the beginning of the recording that now he lives between Istanbul and Washington. When asked if he would return home again Khashoggi said: “I don’t think… I don’t think…”
“See, when I hear about an arrest of my friend who did nothing that worth to be arrested make me feel that I should not go home. I am talking… That friend of mine who was arrested wasn’t even talking.”
Then Khashoggi said that “may be (his friend) was talking critically over something in a dinner party,” hinting out that people spy on each other in the Saudi Kingdom.
“That’s how we are becoming in Saudi Arabia… People who are arrested are not even dissidents, they are close to the government, to the royal family, but they have independent minds,” the Saudi journalist said, according to the recording.
He said then that Saudi Arabia is before “serious transformation that is going to involve and affect every Saudi.”
Khashoggi writes for the Washington Post and is considered as outspoken critic of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s leadership.
The Saudi journalist entered the Saudi consulate Tuesday (October 2) to obtain documents for his upcoming marriage while his Turkish fiancée waited outside. But his fiancée said she never saw him re-emerge.
Turkish officials have said that Khashoggi was murdered inside the consulate.
Source: BBC and Al-Manar