Arab League says only Saudi authorities can punish people responsible for Khashoggi murder



Sat, 27 Feb 2021 - 06:27 GMT


Sat, 27 Feb 2021 - 06:27 GMT

Secretary General of the Arab League Ahmed Aboul Gheit - Reuters

Secretary General of the Arab League Ahmed Aboul Gheit - Reuters

CAIRO – 27 February 2021: Secretary General of the League of Arab States Ahmed Aboul Gheit confirmed that the Saudi judicial authorities are solely concerned with holding accountable those involved in the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi in 2018.

His remarks come a day after a US intelligence report claiming that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman had approved an operation to capture or kill the Saudi journalist in Saudi Arabia’s consulate in Istanbul.

Aboul Gheit, in a statement, expressed support for the statement issued by the Saudi Foreign Ministry to reject the conclusions of the CIA report on the issue.

The Arab League statement indicated that the CIA is not an international ruling or decision-making body, stressing that human rights issues should not be politicized.

The 59-year-old Khashoggi was killed in October 2018 inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul. His body has never been found.

In December 2019, Saudi Arabia sentenced five people to death and three to jail over involvement in the murder of the Saudi journalist.

A year later, a Saudi court jailed eight people for between seven and 20 years, four months after his family forgave his killers and enabled death sentences to be set aside.

Saudi response

The Saudi Foreign Ministry on Friday said it “completely rejects” the report, saying that the report contained “inaccurate information and conclusions,” Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported.

“The Kingdom rejects any measure that infringes upon its leadership, sovereignty, and the independence of its judicial system,” the statement by the ministry said.

The ministry said it has followed the report, which was submitted to the US Congress regarding the “heinous” murder of Khashoggi, reiterating the conclusions previously announced by the relevant authorities in the Kingdom on the murder.

“This crime was committed by a group of individuals that have transgressed all pertinent regulations and authorities of the agencies where they were employed,” the statement said.

“The relevant authorities in the Kingdom took all possible measures within our legal system to ensure that these individuals were properly investigated, and to ensure that justice was served.”

“The concerned individuals were convicted and sentenced by the courts in the Kingdom, and these sentences were welcomed by the family of Jamal Khashoggi, may he Rest in Peace.”

“This was an abhorrent crime and a flagrant violation of the Kingdom’s laws and values,” the ministry stated.

“It is truly unfortunate that this report, with its unjustified and inaccurate conclusions, is issued while the Kingdom had clearly denounced this heinous crime, and the Kingdom’s leadership took the necessary steps to ensure that such a tragedy never takes place again,” the statement said.



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