Amnesty blasts Saudi Khashoggi probe as 'ludicrous'

Amnesty blasts Saudi Khashoggi probe as 'ludicrous', calls for UN investigation
2 min read
20 October, 2018
Amnesty have slammed the Saudi probe into Khashoggi's death, insisting the only way to ensure justice is through an independent and impartial UN investigation.
Amnesty's Sherine Tadros calls for an independent investigation on Thursday [Getty]
Amnesty International says the "impartiality" of a Saudi investigation into the killing of Jamal Khashoggi would remain in question after authorities in the kingdom said the journalist died after a fight in the consulate in Istanbul.

Amnesty's Rawya Rageh said early on Saturday the rights group and other organisations have been very clear that what is needed is "an impartial and independent investigation by the UN to find out what happened and ensure justice" for Khashoggi.

Samah Hadid, Amnesty's director of campaigns for the Middle East, called the Saudi investigation "ludicrous", ridiculing its pledge to "deliver justice and fairness" for the slain writer.

"@amnesty is not buying this pr spun political cover up by the Saudi Arabian government. We demand to know the full truth about what happened to #JamalKhashoggi," Hadid tweeted on Saturday, calling again for an independent investigation into the alleged murder.

On Thursday, four major human rights groups urged Turkey to request a UN investigation into the 60-year-old dissident's presumed murder at the hands of the Saudis.

The Committee to Protect Journalists, Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International and Reporters Without Borders said such a probe would prevent a "whitewash" of the alleged crime.

Khashoggi, a permanent resident of the US who wrote for The Washington Post, disappeared after entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on 2 October.

Media reports citing Turkish officials have said Khashoggi was killed by Saudi agents within minutes of entering the consulate and that his body was dismembered.

"Turkey should enlist the UN to initiate a timely, credible, and transparent investigation," said Robert Mahoney, deputy executive director of the Committee to Protect Journalists.

"UN involvement is the best guarantee against a Saudi whitewash or attempts by other governments to sweep the issue under the carpet to preserve lucrative business ties with Riyadh".

On Friday, The UN chief Antonio Guterres released a statement saying he was "deeply troubled" by Saudi Arabia's confirmation that Khashoggi had died in the consulate.

"The Secretary-General stresses the need for a prompt, thorough and transparent investigation into the circumstances of Mr Khashoggi's death and full accountability for those responsible," said the statement released by his office, however it did not confirm that the UN would undertake such an investigation.

Agencies contributed to this report.