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Saudi prince promises justice for Khashoggi

October 24, 2018

Mohammed bin Salman pledged to work with Turkey at a high-profile business conference in Saudi Arabia. Jamal Khashoggi was a vocal critic of the crown prince before his murder at the beginning of October.

Mohammed bin Salman
Image: picture-alliance/AP/A. Nabil

Saudi prince vows justice

Saudi Arabian Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman promised on Wednesday to work with Turkey to bring those responsible for the murder of Saudi dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi to "justice."

"Those behind this crime will be held accountable," he said during a speech to business leaders at the Future Investment Initiative forum in Riyadh. Khashoggi's death, he added, was a "heinous crime."

Prevarication, Saudi style

He said Riyadh's adversaries have been exploiting the incident to "drive a wedge between Saudi Arabia and Turkey."

The journalist, who had repeatedly criticized the crown prince before his death, went missing at the beginning of October after entering the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul. Turkey accused the Saudi government of murdering and dismembering Khashoggi in the consulate. Riyadh said the journalist had died during a fight, after initially claiming he had left the consulate building alive.

Trump suggests bin Salman responsibility

The incident sparked an international outcry and led many business leaders to pull out of the Future Investment Initiative, colloquially dubbed "Davos in the desert."

US President Donald Trump has suggested bin Salman was responsible for Khashoggi's death in comments made to the Wall Street Journal. "The prince is running things over there more so at this stage," he said. "He's running things and so if anybody were going to be, it would be him."

German Chancellor Angela Merkel has dismissed the Saudi government's explanation for the murder as "insufficient" and temporarily halted arms sales to the kingdom.

Alexander Stubb, a former prime minister of Finland and a prospective candidate for the presidency of the European Commission, told DW that "action must be taken" if Saudi authorities were found to be responsible for the killing.

Turkey for justice

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and bin Salman discussed how to investigate the murder during a telephone conversation on Wednesday, a source close to Erdogan told the AFP news agency.

The Turkish president directly accused Saudi Arabia of a "planned" murder in a speech to the Turkish parliament on Tuesday. "We are determined not to allow any cover up of this murder and for all those responsible — from those who gave the command to those who executed it — not to escape justice," he said.

Alexander Stubb on Conflict Zone

amp/msh (AFP, Reuters, dpa)

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