US intelligence ‘likely’ knew of threat to Khashoggi before his murder

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According to a former UN official investigating the murder of a disgruntled journalist by Saudi Arabia, the US appears to have had intelligence beforehand about the deadly threat posed to Jamal Khashoggi.

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He said that by failing to make public all and any information about the murder, and whether it was already aware of the looming threat, which he said, the US “participates” itself in the punishment enjoyed by Saudi Arabia. making.

“If they have information of any kind, and from any source, in relation to the murder; If they have information about the extent of responsibility of MBS, or the stay in Cairo, and they are not making it public – they are making themselves a participant in impunity,” Agnes Callamard, former UN Special Rapporteur on Extraordinary, summary, or arbitrary execution, told Granthshala.


Ms Callamard spent six months investigating the murder, and said in her 2019 report that Saudi Arabia was responsible for “pre-planned executions”. He also said that there is credible evidence of the liability of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, known as MBS.

  • He investigated the murder of Jamal Khashoggi. Now UN official says US should tell what it knows

Saudi Arabia denied the prince was responsible and claimed 57-year-old Khashoggi was the victim of a “rogue” operation. It charged a handful of low-ranking operatives, though none of the senior officers identified by US intelligence, were a summary whose findings were made public earlier this year.

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Recent months have seen new revelations about the 2018 killing of Khashoggi, a defender of the Saudi regime for several years who had sided with MBS and was increasingly critical – often within his column. Washington Post.

in june the new York Times reported that four members of the Saudi hit squad had received paramilitary training from Tier 1 Group, an Arkansas-based security company owned by private equity firm Cerberus Capital Management.

During the presidential election campaign, Joe Biden called Saudi Arabia a “pariah” and vowed he would take a much harder line with the kingdom than Donald Trump.

Nevertheless, although the report from the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) “assessed” that MBS had sanctioned the killing, no sanctions have been placed on the Crown Prince himself – only on lower-ranking officials.

The US government is currently being sued by two organizations seeking to compel Mr Biden to make public any information the state has about the murder, and threats to Khashoggi, a United States resident. What was already known about.

Ms. Callamard, whose investigation Hearing the 15-minute audio of the murder, which has not been made public, has called on all governments to provide all the evidence they have. She said she was disappointed at how quickly her relations with the US and Saudi Arabia had returned to normal.

In her 2019 report, she said she could independently confirm media reports that both the US and Turkey were aware of the threat to the reporter.

Two years later, she said it appeared “less and less” that the US was not aware of the threat to Khashoggi.

Donald Trump: Jamal Khashoggi’s death ‘worst cover ever’

“Everything we hear is pointing to such a close relationship between the US and Saudi Arabia, including the level of intelligence,” he said.

“And this, coming on top of the leaks very quickly… It’s only a hypothesis, I don’t have any physical evidence, but it [increases] The possibility of the US receiving intelligence on threats to Jamal.

White House did not respond to inquiries Granthshala. The CIA and ODNI cited US intelligence reports from February, but failed to respond to the issue of whether the US had prior knowledge of the threat to Khashoggi. The State Department said it could not comment on intelligence matters.

The Saudi embassy in Washington DC, its foreign ministry and one of its US lawyers also did not respond to requests for comment. Cerberus also did not respond to inquiries.


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