Pakistan recognises Saudi efforts in Khashoggi murder case

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan expressed solidarity with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and recognised its efforts and measures to ensure the conviction and sentencing of the individuals responsible for the murder of Jamal Khashoggi.

A statement issued by the Foreign Office stated: “We have taken note of the public release of the U.S. Administration’s declassified intelligence report, containing its ‘assessment’ on the killing of Jamal Khashoggi. We have also noted that the Saudi government termed Jamal Khashoggi’s murder as an ‘abhorrent crime’ and a ‘flagrant violation of the Kingdom’s laws and values.”

“The Saudi government underlined that it took all possible measures within its legal system to ensure that the individuals responsible were properly investigated, convicted and sentenced and that justice was served,” the statement added.

Pakistan also recognises Saudi efforts in this regard and expresses solidarity with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. “Pakistan underscores adherence to the rule of law, respect for national sovereignty, and protection and promotion of human rights by all States, in accordance with their respective Constitutional frameworks and international obligations,” the FO statement added.

The United States intelligence released a report claiming Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman had approved of an operation to capture or kill dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Khashoggi, 59, was a Saudi journalist living in self-imposed exile in Virginia, US who wrote opinion pieces for the Washington Post critical of the policies of the crown prince – known to some in the West as MBS was killed and dismembered by a team of operatives allegedly linked to the crown prince in the kingdom’s consulate in Istanbul in 2018.

However, Riyadh has denied any involvement by the crown prince. Saudi Arabia categorically rejected the report submitted to the US Congress regarding the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, calling the assessment in the report negative, false and unacceptable.

In a statement on Friday, the Saudi foreign ministry said the report contained inaccurate information and conclusions.

“The ministry reiterates what was previously announced by the relevant authorities in the Kingdom, that this was an abhorrent crime and a flagrant violation of the Kingdom’s laws and values,” the statement read.

“This crime was committed by a group of individuals that have transgressed all pertinent regulations and authorities of the agencies where they were employed. The relevant authorities in the Kingdom took all possible measures within our legal system 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,” the statement added.

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