UN rights expert urges US action over Khashoggi killing

The UN rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions said Washington could act "either through an FBI investigation (or) a civil law investigation... (or) the declassification of CIA and other materials".
UN rights expert urges US action over Khashoggi killing

The United Nations human rights expert who conducted anindependent probe into the murder of dissident Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggion Tuesday urged the US to act on her damning findings.

Agnes Callamard, a UN special rapporteur who concluded thatKhashoggi's death at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul in October was "anextrajudicial execution" by the Gulf kingdom, criticised the United Statesover its inaction.

"(It) has the jurisdiction or at least the interest totake action," she told a London conference hosted by human rights groupson the killing of the Saudi-born US resident.

"Silence is not an option. Speaking up is required butnot enough. We have to act," Callamard said.

The UN rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitraryexecutions said Washington could act "either through an FBI investigation(or) a civil law investigation… (or) the declassification of CIA and othermaterials".

"All of those things I believe can be done and shouldbe done."

Khashoggi, a Washington Post contributor, was killed lastOctober by Saudi agents while at Saudi Arabia's consulate in Istanbul to obtainpaperwork.

His dismembered body has not been found.

Callamard launched her investigation in January and lastmonth released an 101-page report that found "credible evidence"linking Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to the murder and an attemptedcover up.

It said further investigation and financial sanctions werewarranted.

The rapporteur noted she had received no cooperation fromRiyadh and minimal help from the United States.

"The US was not at the top of the cooperationchain," Callamard said.

"They did the minimum to keep them within the remit ofwhat is expected from a Western government."

Callamard added she was not granted any access to the CIA,the US Department of Justice or other Trump officials.

Amid frustration at the global inaction since thepublication of her findings on June 19, and Prince Salman being welcomed to arecent G20 meeting in Japan, she said the West risked a "democraticdeficit" in not responding to widespread public disgust at the killing.

"That is dangerous… that democratic deficit must betackled." Callamard does not speak for the UN but reports her findings toit.

She has called on Secretary General Antonio Guterres toinitiate an international criminal investigation into the case.

His office has said he does not have the authority to dothis and a member state must initiate such action.

Hatice Cengiz, Khashoggi's Turkish fiancee, appearedalongside Callamard at the London event and echoed her call for justice.

"We ask all European countries and especially the UK totake this report more seriously," she said.

"It's too dangerous to behave as if nothing hashappened.

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