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Posted at: Mar 15, 2019, 7:36 AM; last updated: Mar 15, 2019, 7:36 AM (IST)

US faults Saudi for Khashoggi murder

Report avoids linking Prince with killing
US faults Saudi for Khashoggi murder
Jamal Khashoggi

Washington, March 14

The Trump administration used an annual human rights report to call out Saudi Arabia on Wednesday over the October killing of US-based journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

The State Department annual global human rights report said The Washington Post columnist was killed by agents of the kingdom, a close US partner, while he was inside the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul. It drew no conclusion as to who was responsible, despite the belief of intelligence agencies and lawmakers that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman ordered the murder.

The report noted Saudi’s Public Prosecutor’s Office indicted 11 suspects and said 10 persons were under probe but has not released more information. “At year’s end the PPO had not named the suspects nor the roles allegedly played by them in the killing nor had they provided a detailed explanation of the direction and progress of the investigation,” it said. The report said the murder was one of several instances in which “the government or its agents engaged in arbitrary or unlawful killings” and contributed to “an environment of impunity” in the country.

It also cited other human rights abuses in Saudi Arabia, including arrest of 20 women’s activists, executions for nonviolent offences, forced disappearances and torture of prisoners. — AP

Saudis reject call for international probe 

Saudi Arabia on Thursday reiterated its rejection of calls for an international, independent investigation into the Khashoggi murder, insisting it was well equipped to bring the perpetrators to justice. The head of a Saudi delegation, Bandar Al-Aiban, speaking before the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva stressed though that any calls to “internationalise” the probe “amount to interference in our domestic affairs”. 

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