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Jamal Khashoggi's son leaves Saudi Arabia

Kylie Atwood and Justine Redman contributed reporting

Salah Khashoggi, the son of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, left Saudi Arabia on Thursday and is on his way to the U.S., likely to Washington, D.C., CBS News confirms, according to a source close to Saudi leadership. Another source said the Turkish were very helpful in persuading the Kingdom to allow Salah Khashoggi and his family to leave the country, and the State Department helped with visas.  The elder Khashoggi, a columnist for the Washington Post and frequent critic of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, was killed by Saudi officials in the consulate in Istanbul, Turkey earlier this month.

The Saudi government admitted Saturday that Khashoggi was killed in its consulate, saying that his death was part of a rendition gone wrong. On Thursday, the story changed, and Saudi state media acknowledged that Khashoggi's death was premeditated. The crown prince, known as MBS, has denied that he had any involvement in Khashoggi's death, although the Turkish government has claimed that his murder was ordered at the highest levels of Saudi government.

CIA Director Gina Haspel visited Turkey earlier this week, and was reported by the Washington Post to have listened to recordings alleged by the Turkish to be audio of Khashoggi's murder. She was set to brief President Trump on her trip on Thursday. The State Department has already announced that it will revoke visas of 21 Saudis suspected to be connected to Khashoggi's death.

Salah Khashoggi and his brother, Sahel, visited MBS on Tuesday, and were photographed meeting with the crown prince and his father, King Salman, by Saudi state media.

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An image released Oct. 23, 2018, by Saudi Arabia's state-run SPA news agency shows Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (right) shaking hands with Salah Khashoggi, the son of slain Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, in Riyadh.

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Salah Khashoggi, who is a dual U.S.-Saudi citizen, and his family will reunite with other members of the Khashoggi family in the U.S., according to the Human Rights Watch.

  • Grace Segers

    Grace Segers is a politics reporter for CBS News Digital.