President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan held a phone call with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman on Tuesday and discussed steps needed to bring light all aspects of the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, presidential sources said.
The call was made on the request of the crown prince, the sources added. Salman was later due to address the Future Investment Initiative in Riyadh, a high-profile business event that has been overshadowed by the killing Khashoggi. International business leaders have pulled out from attending the summit.
In his speech at the Future Investment Initiative, the crown prince called Khashoggi's killing a "heinous crime that cannot be justified."
"The crime was very painful to all Saudis. And it is painful, heinous to every human being in the world," Mohammed bin Salman said in his first comments since the murder of the journalist.
The crown prince said all culprits will be punished and justice would prevail, adding that Saudi Arabia and Turkey will work together "to reach results."
"Many are trying to exploit the Khashoggi affair to drive a wedge between Saudi Arabia and Turkey," he said. "There will be no divide between Saudi (Arabia) and Turkey under the leadership of King Salman and Erdoğan."
Khashoggi, a Washington Post columnist and a U.S. resident, disappeared three weeks ago after a visit to the Saudi consulate in Istanbul. Riyadh, which initially denied knowledge of his whereabouts, has since said he died in a "fistfight." It later blamed Khashoggi's death on a "rogue operation." The journalist was a critic of the crown prince, the kingdom's de facto ruler.
Erdoğan has said Turkey will not let the killers escape justice, no matter how highly placed they were. The president confirmed Tuesday that a 15-man Saudi team killed the writer at the consulate, describing the killing as "savage" and labeling it as a "political murder."
"As a country, we are determined not to allow the cover-up of the murder. We will share new findings with related parties as we reach them," Erdoğan said Wednesday during a meeting in Ankara.