The Turkish fiancée of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, Hatice Cengiz, along with Democracy for the Arab World Now (DAWN), filed a federal lawsuit against crown prince Mohammed bin Salman (MBS).
The lawsuit says the prince personally instructed Khashoggi’s assassination, according to a Time report.
Cengiz said in a statement Tuesday that her fiance had no doubt that “anything was possible in America,” per Time.
I am counting on the “American civil justice system” to extract “justice and accountability,” Cengiz added.
Who was Jamal Khashoggi?
Khashoggi covered major stories, such as the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan and the rise of the late Al-Qaeda leader. Osama Bin Laden, BBC reported.
The 59-year-old influential Saudi journalist also rubbed elbows with the Saudi royal family for many years.
In addition, he served for decades as a government adviser, according to BBC.
He was a mouthpiece in the Saudi embassies in London and Washington, per the Post.
Kashoggi, unfortunately, fell from grace and went into self-imposed exile in 2017 in the US.
While in the US, he became a Washington Post contributor.
Khashoggi wrote in his first column in September 2017.
According to his article, he had feared an arrest due to MBS’ crackdown on the kingdom’s critics.
Apparently, he criticized the Crown Prince MBS’ policies in his monthly column in the Post.
The journalist describes himself as a proponent of peaceful reforms, including free speech and rights for women, per the Post.
In October 2018, Saudi agents killed Kashoggi when he was trying to obtain papers to marry Cengiz.
Not only was the journalist murdered, but he was also butchered inside the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul, Turkey.
The “negotiations team” then removed his body from the consulate and to this day, his remains have not been found, per Al Jazeera.
The Kingdom’s Account
Saudi officials initially made conflicting statements such as Khashoggi left the building in one piece, per Time.
Ultimately, authorities explained Khashoggi’s death as a tragic accident.
Officials declared that the team merely persuaded him to return to the kingdom.
Unfortunately, the so-called persuasion resulted in Khashoggi’s accidental death.
Parody of Justice on Kashogggi’s “Accidental Death”
The court had originally handed out the death penalty but later scaled down the punishment, according to Time.
In September, a Saudi court sentenced five mid-level officials and agents to 20-year jail time due to Khashoggi’s son’s announcement of forgiveness.
The journalist’s son, Salah, is living in Saudi Arabia and received financial compensation from the royal court.
Prince MBS continues to incarcerate princes, businessmen, and activists he considers threatening, per the Post.
For a kingdom who wishes to align its society with the rest of the world, it is rather ironic that it only allowed its women to drive in 2017 and vote in 2015.
To make matters worse, the one who advanced women’s right to drive, the Nobel Peace Prize nominee, Loujain al-Hathloul, is still behind bars.
It’s no wonder why Saudi failed to take a seat at the UN Human Rights Council.
Three words. Lead by example.