Through a skillful campaign of intelligence leaks to the news media, Mr. Erdogan has engineered prominent coverage of the case around the world, and he has sought to engage Western support to curb the Saudi prince, whom he sees as a personal threat.
Prince Mohammed has described Turkey, along with Iran and extremist Islamist groups, as part of a “triangle of evil.” Mr. Erdogan has taken that comment and Saudi support for Kurdish rebels fighting the Islamic State in Syria as a direct challenge to his power.
He said Turkish intelligence had shared audio recordings of the killing with foreign intelligence services that had asked to hear them, including those from Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Saudi Arabia and the United States.
“The tape is really terrible,” Mr. Erdogan said, according to Posta. “Moreover, the Saudi intelligence officer was so shocked he said, ‘Perhaps he took heroin, only someone who took heroin can do that.’”
“Yes the man was shocked when he heard it, and this is the truth,” Mr. Erdogan said according to another daily, Yeni Safak. “Despite that, there are those who are seeking to manipulate the incident. When the crown prince telephoned me, he said: ‘Can I send my chief prosecutor,’ and I said ‘Of course, he is welcome to come.’”
“He arrived, he met with the Istanbul chief prosecutor. When he asked to the president, the Istanbul chief prosecutor naturally told him, ‘I am your interlocutor, you can only meet me.’ Unfortunately the prosecutor who arrived is in the mood of sprinkling flour on rope,” Mr. Erdogan said, using a Turkish expression that means making excuses to avoid doing a task.