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Security Images Show Khashoggi and Fiancée in His Final Hours

ISTANBUL — In the continuing frenzy of media attention to the murder of Jamal Khashoggi before a much-anticipated statement by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Turkish media have published poignant photographs of Mr. Khashoggi and his fiancée in the last hours and days of his life.

Mr. Khashoggi and Hatice Cengiz, who is Turkish, are seen holding hands as they visit the local marriage office and enter the building where they had bought an apartment that they were furnishing before he went to the appointment at the Saudi Consulate from which he never emerged.

Ms. Cengiz has been provided with police protection, according to Metmet Fatih Oke, director of the Turkish Arab Media Association and a friend of Mr. Khashoggi. Ms. Cengiz had not come under any specific threat, but the protection was a precaution, he said.

Social media trolls have attacked Ms. Cengiz in Arabic and Turkish in recent days, questioning the extent of her relationship with Mr. Khashoggi.

Yet the photographs and video taken from closed circuit television cameras of Mr. Khashoggi’s last days in Istanbul confirm Ms. Cengiz’s account, in an interview, that the couple planned to marry as soon as they received the necessary paper from the Saudi Consulate and that they had bought an apartment. Ms. Cengiz, who is studying for her doctorate in Istanbul, said the furniture was due to arrive the day after Mr. Khashoggi disappeared.

The well-connected, pro-government daily newspaper Sabah published photographs of the couple visiting the Fatih Marriage Office on the morning of Friday, Sept. 28, four days before Mr. Khashoggi’s fateful visit to the Saudi Consulate.

They spent barely five minutes seated at a clerk’s desk and were pictured leaving the marriage office together, holding hands. According to the newspaper they went straight from there to the consulate, where Mr. Khashoggi went in unannounced to request a document verifying his marital status.

Photos from the closed circuit television show the couple entering the apartment in Topkapi, one of Istanbul’s oldest districts, near the historical sites of Hagia Sofia and the Blue Mosque, in the early hours of Oct. 2.

Mr. Khashoggi had returned from a conference in London and took a taxi from the airport just after 4 a.m. that day, Sabah reported. He nearly crossed paths with those thought to be his murderers as members of the Saudi hit squad arrived at the same airport minutes later, at 4:29 a.m., according to the newspaper.

Less than an hour later Mr. Khashoggi met Ms. Cengiz outside the apartment building and they entered the lobby together, Ms. Cengiz wearing a purple head scarf and carrying a plastic bag.

They left the building and were recorded entering the residence again just after noon, the A Haber news channel reported. From there they took a taxi together to the Saudi Consulate.

They parted at the police barrier as Mr. Khashoggi handed his two cellphones to Ms. Cengiz and at 1:14 p.m. entered the consulate alone.

Source: NYT > World

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