Saudi Arabia rejects US report accusing MBS of approving operation to kill Khashoggi

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JEDDAH – Saudi Arabia has rejected a US intelligence report that claims Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi was murdered on the nod of Kingdom’s Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman (MBS).

An unclassified US intelligence report was released on Friday confirming for the first time what role top US intelligence officials believe MBS played in the 2018 killing of the Saudi journalist.

The Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs termed the intelligence reportedly as negative, false and unacceptable, adding that the report contained inaccurate information and conclusions.

It reiterated that the murder of Khashoggi was an abhorrent crime and a flagrant violation of the Kingdom’s laws and values. “This crime was committed by a group of individuals that have transgressed all pertinent regulations and authorities of the agencies where they were employed,” it added.

Jamal Khashoggi — a royal family insider turned critic — was killed and dismembered at the kingdom’s consulate in Istanbul in October 2018, in a case that tarnished the reputation of de facto ruler Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

The ministry further said that the Kingdom took all possible measures to ensure that these individuals were properly investigated, and to ensure that justice was served.

The concerned individuals were convicted and sentenced by the courts in the Kingdom, and these sentences were welcomed by the family of Jamal Khashoggi.

Rejecting the report, the Saudi ministry said that it rejects any measure that infringes upon its leadership, sovereignty, and the independence of its judicial system.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs affirms that the partnership between the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the United States of America is a robust and enduring partnership. This partnership has thrived for nearly eight decades on the basis of mutual respect, and the institutions in both countries have worked diligently to deepen these ties in all aspects, through increased cooperation and consultations to bolster security and stability in the region and the world.

Meanwhile, the US imposed sanctions on some peopled involved in the case but it did not announce any action against the crown prince keeping in view the ties with the kingdom.

However, US President Joe Biden in an interview said that he had asked the Saudi King Salman to tackle human rights violations in the kingdom.

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