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The prince promised social and economic reform, but Khashoggi pointed to the escalating crackdown on dissent voices and the media in Saudi Arabia.

A Sunni power, Saudi Arabia is also annoyed by Ankara's rapprochement with the kingdom's Shiite archrival, Iran.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan demanded Monday that Saudi Arabia prove that journalist Jamal Khashoggi left the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul on his own, as Saudi officials have repeatedly asserted, after he disappeared last week while inside the mission.

Jamal Khashoggi, a Saudi journalist who had been living in self-exile in United States for more than a year, had disappeared last week after entering the Saudi Arabian consulate building in Istanbul.

Trump said he could not justify sacrificing jobs and income generated by the arms deal. Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman "is acting like [Russian President Vladimir] Putin", Khashoggi wrote in another one. Sources in Turkey believe that Khashoggi was killed in a state-sponsored murder after entering the consulate. He walked into the consulate of Saudi Arabia, his native country, without doubting he would be safe there.

"Is it possible for there to be no camera systems at the Saudi Arabia consulate, where the event took place?", Erdogan was quoted as saying by Hurriyet. Regardless, Khashoggi's last known whereabouts was there at around 1:14 p.m. local time last Tuesday.

The interview was conducted three days before Khashoggi's disappearance, when he was in London for a conference, the BBC said. He says that stepping back from arms sales to the Saudis "a very, very tough pill to swallow for our country".

Turkish officials allege that Jamal Khashoggi was killed inside the consulate.

He added: "We trust the government and the actions taken, and all the efforts that are taken in the case of Jamal Khashoggi". Turkish officials have said they fear the columnist was killed there.

President Donald Trump also publicly expressed concern over the reports surrounding Khashoggi's disappearance. Per the Times' source, the team's plan was "quick and complex", and the Saudi dissenter was dismembered "with a bone saw they brought for the goal".

Pressure, meanwhile, mounted in Congress for the Trump administration to address the writer's disappearance.

"We call for cooperation between Turkey and Saudi Arabia to conduct a prompt and impartial investigation into the circumstances of Mr Khashoggi's disappearance and to make the findings public", United Nations human rights spokeswoman Ravina Shamdasani told a Geneva news briefing.

Some senators are questioning American support for the Saudi military campaign in Yemen as anger intensifies with the kingdom over the disappearance of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

The legal advisor, Motasem Khashoggi, told Al Arabiya English that the family is coordinating with the Saudi government in the case.