Bin Salman should 'bear criminal responsibility' for Khashoggi murder, close friend claims

27 February 2021, 13:32

By Seán Hickey

The Saudi Crown Prince should be held accountable for the death of Jamal Khashoggi says a close friend of the slain journalist.

"Whether we like it or not, governments in the west feel like they have to do business with Saudi Arabia," Dr Daud Abdullah claimed.

The director of Middle East Monitor told Matt Frei he feared that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman is getting off scot-free despite his proven involvement in the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi in Istanbul.

He found it unconscionable that "they have identified the person responsible for giving the orders" but nothing is being done to that person.

Dr Abdullah told Matt that Crown Prince Bin Salman "should bear criminal responsibility for it."

"The report, while it identifies him, it does not go far enough. There could be sanctions on him personally."

Read More: Five jailed for 20 years over Khashoggi murder

Dr Abdullah went on: "Individuals have been identified and sanctioned and, you know, there's no reason why he shouldn't."

Matt went further to get an impression of Mr Khashoggi's mindset in his final few days. "Was he afraid that something awful might happen to him?" He asked Dr Abdullah, who spent time with Mr Khashoggi in London just two days before his death.

"There was no unease or undue concern about his security," Dr Abdullah claimed.

Matt wondered how he felt once he heard the news of Mr Khashoggi's death. Dr Abdullah told him that once he realised "it happened in the embassy," he knew it was "not a good sign" and suspected that something more sinister was in hand.