(CNN)Saudi Arabia has given Turkey permission to search its Istanbul consulate Monday afternoon, nearly two weeks after journalist Jamal Khashoggi went missing there, a Turkish diplomatic source told CNN.
The news comes as international pressure mounts on Riyadh to explain the journalist’s disappearance. Khashoggi, a columnist for The Washington Post and a Saudi royal insider-turned-critic, entered the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, Turkey on October 2 and has not been seen since.
Khashoggi’s disappearance has created a diplomatic rift between Saudi and the West, with the UK, France and Germany demanding a “credible investigation” into the events and US President Donald Trump warning of serious retribution if the Saudis are found to be behind his possible death.
Saudi authorities maintain Khashoggi left the consulate the same afternoon but have provided no evidence of that.
A joint Turkish-Saudi working group into the case has been proposed, but the results of a separate, internal Saudi investigation should be made public soon, a Saudi official with knowledge of the probe told CNN on Monday.
The Saudi official said that a royal decree was issued Friday directing the public prosecutor to conduct an internal investigation into the Khashoggi case, based on intelligence shared with Saudi Arabia by Turkey.
While a joint Turkish-Saudi investigation team is still cooperating on the ground, “the leadership had felt that an internal investigation was needed to make sure no stone is left unturned to unfold the truth,” the official said.
On Sunday, Washington and Riyadh traded a series of threats, with Trump warning of the potential for “severe punishment” and Saudi officials threatening to retaliate if the US imposed sanctions. Riyadh later softened its tone.