Wednesday, January 19, 2022

One of suspected killers of Jamal Khashoggi held in France


One of the suspected killers of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi was arrested at the Roissy airport near Paris on Tuesday as he was about to board a flight to Riyadh, French RTL radio reported.

RTL said the person arrested was a former Royal Guard of Saudi Arabia who is believed to have been involved in the killing of Kashoggi at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul in October 2018.

A French police source also told Reuters that extradition proceedings to Turkey were set to begin.

The arrest came just days after French President Emmanuel Macron held face-to-face talks in Saudi Arabia with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, becoming the first major Western leader to visit the kingdom since Khashoggi’s murder.

Related: ‘Saudi crown prince approved operation to capture or kill Khashoggi’ 

“I welcome the arrest of one of Jamal’s killers today in #France,” his fiancee Hatice Cengiz said on Twitter. “France should try him for his crime, or extradite him to a country able and willing to genuinely investigate and prosecute him as well as the person who gave the order to murder Jamal.”

President Joe Biden’s administration released a U.S. intelligence report in February implicating Saudi Arabian Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in Khashoggi’s 2018 murder in Istanbul but spared him any direct punishment. The crown prince denies any involvement.

Last year, Saudi Arabian courts announced they had sentenced eight Saudi nationals to prison but they were not identified.

Earlier this month, Mr Khashoggi’s fiancée Hatice Cengiz, urged Justin Bieber to cancel his December performance in the country, saying he should instead “send a powerful message to the world” that his name “will not be used to restore the reputation of a regime that kills its critics”.

Khashoggi, a Saudi-born U.S. resident who wrote opinion columns for the Washington Post critical of the Saudi crown prince, was killed and dismembered by a team of operatives linked to the prince in the kingdom’s consulate in Istanbul.


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