Saudi Journalist in Turkey Abducted by the Kingdom
by Stephen Lendman (stephenlendman.org – Home – Stephen Lendman)
Jamal Khashoggi is a prominent Saudi journalist/editor-in-chief of the Al Arab New Channel, earlier in the same capacity with the Saudi Arab Times and Al-Watan.
In September 2017, he fled Saudi Arabia. On October 2, he entered the kingdom’s Istanbul, Turkey consulate and hasn’t been seen or heard from since.
Saudi Arabia is the Arab world’s most ruthless dictatorship, a despotic crime family owning a nation, masquerading as legitimate governance.
Along with America and Israel, it’s the region’s leading (Arab state) sponsor of ISIS and other terrorist groups.
Despotic rule is absolute, no opposition tolerated, no civil or human rights afforded ordinary Saudis – no speech, media or academic freedoms, no right of assembly, association, internal movement, foreign travel, or religion.
No right of Saudis to choose their government or have easy access to education, healthcare, public housing, legal services or social ones. Political parties are banned. So are collective bargaining rights and Internet access.
Despite close US/Saudi ties, the 2017 State Department human rights report accused the kingdom of the following:
- “unlawful killings (without) due process, torture, arbitrary arrest and detention for political reasons;
- restrictions on freedom of expression…peaceful assembly, association, movement, and religion;
- citizens’ lack of ability and legal means to choose their government through free and fair elections; trafficking in persons; violence and official gender discrimination against women and criminalization of same sex sexual activity” – among other civil and human rights abuses.
It’s waging US planned, initiated, and orchestrated naked aggression in Yemen – an epic disaster created, millions of defenseless civilians in the country threatened with death from war, untreated diseases, and starvation, the toll likely in the hundreds of thousands already, mounting exponentially daily.
Public executions in the kingdom occur regularly, largely by beheadings – notably against human rights workers and regime critics.
Speech, press and academic freedoms are considered crimes against the state.
In December 2016, the Saudi regime banned Khashoggi from publishing his weekly Al Hayat column, attending conferences, and appearing on television for criticizing Trump, especially his hostility toward Iran.
A kingdom press agency statement said his views conflicted with its own, including his support for Syria’s Bashar al-Assad, citing an anonymous source.
Saudi envoy to Turkey Walid Bin Abdul Karim El Khereiji was summoned to Ankara’s foreign ministry over Khashoggi’s disappearance.
A kingdom statement lied claiming he left the consulate on his own. Turkish officials said he remains forcibly detained inside.
He entered the consulate for paperwork needed to be married next week, according to his fiancee Hatice, giving only her first name, fearing retribution, saying:
“I don’t know what has happened to him. I can’t even guess how such a thing can happen to him.”
Saudi/Turkish relations are already strained over their conflicting views on Iran and Qatar.
Both countries notoriously imprison journalists and others for criticizing their policies.
Is Khashoggi still in the Saudi consulate or held elsewhere? Is he alive or dead? His fate remains unknown publicly.
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