Christiaan Triebert+ Your Authors @trbrtc Visual Investigations @nytimes. Previously @bellingcat. Monitoring things, mostly niche. Retired hitchhiker. @quiztime. Usual caveats. Oct. 08, 2018 5 min read + Your Authors

Now that Turkish officials have pledged that they'll release evidence (including video footage, focus on black car) that they say supports the claim that @JKhashoggi was killed shortly after entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, let's see what the #OSINT community can find.

A request to look at openly tracked flights from Istanbul to Saudi Arabia, or the other way around, has led to no results so far, but who knows what can still be found.

We've been looking at publicly available webcams around the perimeters of the Saudi consulate (h/t @evaludemann), but no webcam has been found. Here's the location:,29.0142899,383a,35y,339.46h,44.93t/data=!3m1!1e3!4m12!1m6!3m5!1s0x14cab66feb356405:0xde66b0225591c24a!2sConsulate+of+Saudi+Arabia+-+%C4%B0stanbul!8m2!3d41.0858071!4d29.0121987!3m4!1s0x14cab66feb356405:0xde66b0225591c24a!8m2!3d41.0858071!4d29.0121987 . Pakistani consulate surely has camera footage, but will they publish it?

A geobased search on social media using @echosec_uk between October 1 and October 7, has also — so far — not led to anything of interest. But who knows, once Turkish officials release information about that black car.

This is the back entrance to the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, #Turkey.

Okay, this may be worth looking into: 15 Saudis allegedley travelled in two private Gulfstream IVs to Istanbul on October 2. Tail fin numbers are HZ-SK 1 and HZ-SK 2. H/t @tobiaschneider. #OSINT

The above reporting by @DailySabah can be corroborated with open sources, both flights were tracked:
→ HZSK1 Riyadh to Istanbul (Oct 2)
→ HZSK1 Istanbul to Egypt (Oct 2)
→ HZSK2 Riyadh to Istanbul (Oct 2)
→ HZSK2 Istanbul to Dubai (?) (Oct 2)
→ HZSK2 Dubai to Riyadh (Oct 3)

This picture — spread via WhatsApp — allegedly shows @JKhashoggi walking into the Saudi consulate at 13:14 local time. (H/t @MeKassab/@soltanlife for sharing). Geolocation shows it is indeed the north entrance of the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, #Turkey.,29.0121168,3a,34.4y,224.3h,86.63t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sJF2_viLsKJgZMjob3yPQTg!2e0!7i13312!8i6656 

#OSINT REQUEST: Do we know what kind of clothes @JKhashoggi was wearing on October 2? Any help much appreciated. In case there is such visual information, does it match this?

Can someone ID this Mercedes and decipher the licence plate? It may be the “black van” Turkish official sources talked about. (H/t @DYShor). The licence plate should have the structure 99 XX 9999 (white on green for Consulates).

Speaking to @washingtonpost ( ), @JKhashoggi's fiancée confirms it's him on the surveillance camera (Cam 1 of possibly 4).

The most likely configuration of the white on green licence plate on this black Mercedes Sprinter (?) is 34 CC 2312.

34 = Istanbul
CC = Corps Consulaire

Turkish daily newspaper @milliyet reports that 6 “mysterious” vehicles left the Saudi consulate 2.5 hrs after @JKhashoggi entered it. One of them was/resembled a Mercedes Vito, which went to Consulate General's residence (ht @bibken/@uykusuzabdal). 

NOT VERIFIED, but @DailySabah released names and photos of persons allegedly involved. .

Based on the currently available information, here's a timeline of the movements of #JamalKhashoggi and the Saudi officials who reportedly arrived into Istanbul the day he went missing. We continue to monitor and research. 

A second CCTV still has emerged (via Bruce Riedel/@lrozen ), this time showing what appears to be a black Mercedes Vito (h/t @tresbonetat) in front of the Saudi consul's residence at 15:09 — 1hr56m after #JamalKhashoggi entered the Consulate.

Turkish officials have identified 15 Saudi operatives who flew last week to Istanbul in pursuit of #JamalKhashoggi. This is what known about their identities so far, based on @nytimes reporters research and open source sleuths on Twitter. Research ongoing. 

Two identities can be (with a high level of confidence) corroborated with open source information:
— Salah Muhammad al-Tubaigy (1971), chief of forensic evidence and autopsy expert at @MOISaudiArabia;
— Meshal Saad al-Bostani (1987), a Saudi Air Force lieutenant.

Open source digging continues, especially by @malachybrowne, @Qattouby, @iyad_elbaghdadi, and many others.

Wow, Saudi-owned Al Arabiya goes full on RT mode. Bizarre. (H/t @Elizrael).

Any Apple Watch on the market does not have a function to read fingerprints.

This very obvious fake is also making the rounds. (@JKhashoggi is simply mirrored in the second picture.) Via @habibahamid.

Saudi Ministry of Foreign Affairs (@KSAMOFA) says media are spreading “lies and allegations” regarding the disappearance of #JamalKhashoggi. But Saudi Arabia has not presented any evidence to proof the contrary of their involvement.

From “the 15 Saudi men were just tourists” to Qatari conspiracies: Saudi media — much of it state-owned — is covering the disappearance of #JamalKhashoggi in a different way. @ntabrizy and @bianelkhatib take a closer look. 

One of the suspects IDed by Turkey in the #JamalKhashoggi case was seen disembarking with MbS in Paris and Madrid, as well as standing guard during MbS's visits to Houston, Boston and the UN. Here's the latest from the @nytimes team working on this. 

That suspect is Maher Abdulaziz Mutreb. He was a diplomat assigned to the Saudi Embassy in London in 2007. He has also traveled extensively with MBS, perhaps as a bodyguard. For example, here he is in April 2018, flanking the crown prince in Paris, France. 

Here he is again, this time seen disembarking an official aircraft in Madrid, #Spain, right after the crown prince MBS. 

Europe is not the only place where the suspect accompanied Mohammad bin Salman. In the United States, Mr Mutreb is seen observing the crowd in the immediate surrounding of the crown prince in Houston and Boston respectively. 

Excellent (digital) sleuthing above is the work of many, including @malachybrowne @bottidavid @ckoettl @babimarcolini @bianelkhatib @singhvianjali @NYTBen @ddknyt of the @nytimes — also make sure to follow to great efforts and findings by e.g. @Qattouby and @iyad_elbaghdadi.

Slowly but (hopefully) surely we get a better idea of what happened to #JamalKhashoggi. This case study shows once again the strength of #OSINT: facial recognition software, public records, social media, cellphone number database, the crowdsourced intelligence of Twitter, etc.

If these men were indeed at the Saudi Consulate when #JamalKhashoggi disappeared, the @nytimes showed that there's a direct link between at least one of them — Mr Mutreb — and the crown prince MBS. Rogue operation?

More to come.

You can follow @trbrtc.


Tip: mention @threader_app on a Twitter thread with the keyword “compile” to get a link to it.

Enjoy Threader? Sign up.

Since you’re here...

... we’re asking visitors like you to make a contribution to support this independent project. In these uncertain times, access to information is vital. Threader gets 1,000,000+ visits a month and our iOS Twitter client was featured as an App of the Day by Apple. Your financial support will help two developers to keep working on this app. Everyone’s contribution, big or small, is so valuable. Support Threader by becoming premium or by donating on PayPal. Thank you.

Follow Threader