UN human rights expert criticizes US inaction over Khashoggi case

An independent United Nations rights expert, who conducted an investigation into the murder of prominent journalist Jamal Khashoggi last October, has criticized the United States for its inaction over the case.

"(It) has the jurisdiction or at least the interest to take action. Silence is not an option. Speaking up is required but not enough. We have to act,” UN special rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions Agnes Callamard told a conference in London hosted by human rights groups on the killing of the Saudi-born dissident.

She stressed that Washington could act “either through an FBI investigation (or) a civil law investigation... (or) the declassification of CIA and other materials. All of those things I believe can be done and should be done.”

An official Saudi investigation into the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi has failed to examine who may have ordered the killing and ignored key suspects.
“The US was not at the top of the cooperation chain. They did the minimum to keep them within the remit of what is expected from a Western government,” Callamard said.

The United Nations human rights expert added she was not granted any access to the CIA, the US Department of Justice or other officials from US President Donald Trump’s administration.

Callamard further argued that the West risked a “democratic deficit” in not responding to widespread public disgust at the killing.

“That is dangerous... that democratic deficit must be tackled,” she commented.

A UN rights investigator says there is “credible evidence” linking Saudi Arabia's crown prince to the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi last October.
Hatice Cengiz, a Turkish writer and Khashoggi's fiancée, also echoed her call for justice at the conference.

“We ask all European countries and especially the UK to take this report more seriously,” she said. “It's too dangerous to behave as if nothing has happened.”

Jamal Khashoggi's fiancée has called for an international investigation on the journalist's killing on Tuesday in Geneva.
Khashoggi, a Washington Post contributor and critic of the Saudi crown prince, was murdered at the Saudi consulate in Turkey’s largest city of Istanbul on October 2, 2018.

Riyadh initially said it had no knowledge of his fate, but later blamed the murder on rogue agents.

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