A Message To Those Who Were Exploiting The Khashoggi Case – OpEd
By Arab News
By Dr. Hamdan Al-Shehri*
The Khashoggi case has had widespread repercussions since its occurrence, as it took place in initially mysterious circumstances until it was investigated and the clues of this crime were known.
This case could have been dealt with like any other criminal investigation in Saudi Arabia, as it occurred in the Saudi consulate, and the perpetrators and the victim were Saudi citizens.
However, it took on political dimensions that showed the extent of the hatred, and even indifference of some groups to the feelings of Khashoggi’s family by their publishing painful details that should have been examined by the justice system first, and then passed on to the relatives in a humane way.
However, as we know, the incident was considered media material and used to attack the Saudi government, people and system by Turkey and certain international movements.
Saudi Arabia did not pay attention to these campaigns and worked to achieve justice.
During more than a year of investigations, collecting evidence, correspondence with Turkey and, prior to that, the visit of Saudi officials to Turkey to find out more about the case, Turkey did not cooperate.
Rather, it tried to use the case to serve its own interests, as if human rights were a priority for Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, whose record in this regard is well known.
Nevertheless, the prosecution conducted its investigations which did not exclude anyone related to the case or aho had knowledge of it due to their post or the location of the crime.
The prosecution was transparent in its sessions. Attendance was open to the sons and relatives of the victim, Jamal Khashoggi, with their attorneys, to representatives of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council and of the Turkish Embassy.
In the final session, there were several convictions. Five people were sentenced to death and three were sentenced to a total of 24 years’ imprisonment. Major-General Ahmed Al-Asiri was tried and released due to insufficient evidence.
Saud Al-Qahtani was investigated but not charged. The Saudi consul-general in Istanbul at the time of the murder and two others were exonerated.
After the sentencing the son of Jamal Khashoggi expressed confidence in the Saudi judiciary at all levels. This is evidence that the sons of Khashoggi trust the Saudi courts, and know that no one would have been fairer to them.
It is also a message to hypocrites who are exploiting the Khashoggi case.
• Dr. Hamdan Al-Shehri is a political analyst and international relations scholar.