Turkey’s Erdogan could meet Saudi Crown Prince on G20 sidelines: spokesman

ANKARA: Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan could meet Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman on the sidelines of a G20 summit in Argentina next week amid tensions between Ankara and Riyadh, the Turkish presidential spokesman said Thursday.

“We are looking at the programme,” spokesman Ibrahim Kalin said in Ankara. “There could be” a meeting between the two men, he said.

Saudi Arabia and Turkey are clashing over the murder of Riyadh critic and Washington Post contributor Jamal Khashoggi, 59, inside the kingdom’s consulate in Istanbul last month.

Such a meeting would be the first face-to-face encounter between Erdogan and the crown prince since the killing that tainted the image of Prince Salman, known as MBS, who is seen as the driving force in day-to-day rule of the kingdom.

The two men previously spoke on the phone last month where they discussed joint efforts to shed light on what happened to Khashoggi.

Khashoggi, a US resident and Saudi citizen, was lured to the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 2, killed and dismembered, according to Turkish prosecutors.

After lengthy denials, Saudi authorities admitted responsibility and said 21 people had been taken into custody.

However, a CIA analysis leaked to the US media went further, reportedly pointing the finger at the crown prince.

Turkey has repeatedly called for those who ordered the murder to be held accountable but has stopped short of directly blaming Prince Mohammed.

[source_without_link]Agence France-Presse[/source_without_link]