Jamal Khashoggi Killing: Saudi Regime’s ‘Message’ to Deter Opposition

Written by | Saturday, December 7th, 2019

The brutal killing of Jamal Khashoggi was most likely authorized by the “highest levels” of the Saudi regime, said the fiancée of the murdered Saudi journalist. Speaking in Brussels earlier this week, Hatice Cengiz said that she “cannot really imagine what the Saudi state thought it could achieve by killing Jamal but, maybe, after the Arab Spring, they were saying: Either you are with us or, if not, look at what will happen to you.” Jamal Khashoggi was a prominent Saudi Arabian dissident, author and columnist for The Washington Post who was assassinated at the Saudi embassy in Istanbul in early October 2018.
Together with Agnes Callamard, Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial, Summary or Arbitrary Executions at the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Cengiz was in Brussels to demand “more action” by the EU and the international community in the Khashoggi case. As a researcher based in Istanbul, she called for an “independent and impartial” investigation into his death. “My aim, despite the disappointing response, is to keep the issue alive. Those responsible, including at the highest levels of the regime, need to be held to account for what they did.”
She denounced the reaction of the EU and the international community generally, contrasting it with Turkey which, she said, had “done all it can” to investigate the murder. Callamard, a French official, echoed her comments, arguing that the EU had failed to hold the Saudis to account for the murder. “Initially, the EU issued strongly-worded statements about the killing but since then its response has been extremely disappointing, in line with the rest of the international community,” said the Special UN Rapporteur. Both Cengiz and Callamard also met MEPs and EU officials on Tuesday (3 December) to update them about the case.

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