Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau confirmed that Turkey has shared audio tapes with Canada related to the murder of Saudi opposition journalist Jamal Khashoggi, thus becoming a first foreign leader to confirm the existence of the recordings, Sputnik reported.
Last week, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that the recordings were shared with France, Saudi Arabia, the United Kingdom and the United States, among others. French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said that he was not aware whether Turkey had actually shared the information and accused the Turkish leader of "playing political games.”
“Canada’s intelligence agencies have been working very closely on this issue with Turkish intelligence and Canada has been fully briefed on what Turkey had to share,” Trudeau said at a press conference in Paris on Monday.
The Canadian prime minister confirmed that the intelligence had heard the tapes, but added that he “has not” heard the tapes himself.
“I had a conversation with Erdogan a couple of weeks ago, and here in Paris we had brief exchanges and I thanked him for his strength in responding to the Khashoggi situation,” Trudeau added.
Earlier, Canadian Prime Minister said that his government is willing to freeze exports of military hardware to Saudi Arabia following the death of Saudi journalist, according to reports.
Khashoggi, a Washington Post columnist known for his criticism of Saudi policies, disappeared on October 2 after entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul. Saudi Arabia's acknowledgement that the journalist had been killed in a fight inside the consulate came after two weeks of denials and growing pressure from Western allies to provide explanations. According to Riyadh, 18 people have been arrested over their involvement in the incident.