Saudi Crown Prince sued for the murder of Jamal Khashoggi

Saudi Journalist Kama Khashoggi who was killed in 20128 | Photo: The Asahi Shimbun/Getty Images

The fiancee of the late Saudi Journalist Jamal Khashoggi, Hatice Cengiz and the Human Rights organization Khashoggi founded, Democracy for the Arab World Now (DAWN), have filed a federal lawsuit against the Crown Price Mohammed bin Salman, accusing him or ordering Khashoggi’s killing, as a means of “permanently silencing” Khashoggi’s advocacy for democratic reform in the Arab world.

The lawsuit alleges that Khashoggi was tortured, murdered and dismembered “pursuant to a directive of Defendant Mohammed bin Salman.” It further said that the Crown Prince and twenty four other named co-defendants “saw Khashoggi’s actions in the United States as an existential threat to their pecuniary and other interests and, accordingly, conspired to commit the heinous acts that are the subject of this suit,”

Attorneys Keith M. Harper and Faisal Gill, who are representing Cengiz and DAWN, said in a videoconference Tuesday, that the aims of the lawsuit is to have a US court hold the Crown Prince accountable for Khashoggi’s murder as well as to obtain documents from both Saudi Arabia and the US, which would reveal the truth.

Cengiz, who also spoke at the videoconference said that Khashoggi was murdered because he advocated for democracy in the Middle East and human rights for all, “and especially because he advocated them in the United States” stating that it was Muhammed bin Salman who killed her finace’.

“Certainly, no one behind this most gruesome murder should have any role in becoming monarch,” she said. “I ask the United States government — a nation that has stood for justice, accountability and human rights — I ask that you stand with me and all those who loved Jamal and say, ‘We will support your efforts to fully uncover the truth and ensure that those responsible are found liable in a court of law’.” She said.

While the Saudi Embassy is reported to have denied any part in Khashoggi’s murder, the Crown Prince has previously denied ordering Khashoggi’s killing. Saudi officials insist that Khashoggi was murdered by rogue agents who defied the orders to convince Khashoggi to return to Saudi Arabia, describing the murder as a “tragic accident”. However, In 2018, the CIA concluded that is was Mohammed who ordered the killing, contradicting the claims of Saudi Arabia.

Khashoggi was killed on 2nd October of 2018 after visiting the Saudi Arabian consulate in Istanbul to obtain documents which would allow him to marry. The journalist’s death and dismemberment was first revealed by Turkey’s government setting off a wave of international revulsion and calls to ostracize Saudi leadership.