Sat 27 February 2021:
Saudi Arabia said it rejected completely “the negative, false and unacceptable” assessment of a US intelligence report released on Friday on the murder of Saudi citizen Jamal Khashoggi.
“The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia completely rejects the negative, false and unacceptable assessment in the report pertaining to the Kingdom’s leadership and notes that the report contained inaccurate information and conclusions,” the Foreign Ministry said in a statement issued by the Saudi Press Agency.
“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has followed the report submitted to the United States’ Congress regarding the heinous murder of Saudi citizen Jamal Khashoggi,” the Ministry said in a statement.
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The US intelligence community report, produced by the US Office of the Director of National Intelligence, confirms that US spy agencies had concluded MBS “approved an operation” to capture or kill the Saudi journalist in Istanbul, Turkey.
#STATEMENT | The Government of The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia Completely Rejects the Assessment in the Report Submitted to US’ Congress Regarding Murder of Saudi Citizen Jamal Khashoggi pic.twitter.com/VQwYpBjvvX
— Foreign Ministry 🇸🇦 (@KSAmofaEN) February 26, 2021
The Ministry reiterated that this was an “abhorrent crime and a flagrant violation of the Kingdom’s laws and values.”
“The crime was committed by a group of individuals that have transgressed all pertinent regulations,” said the statement.
“The relevant authorities in the Kingdom took all possible measures within our legal system to ensure that these individuals were properly investigated, and to ensure that justice was served. The concerned individuals were convicted and sentenced by the courts in the Kingdom, and these sentences were welcomed by the family of Jamal Khashoggi.”
The Ministry affirmed that the partnership between the Kingdom and the United States is “robust and enduring.”
The four-page US report, required by Congress, had been held back from public view by former President Donald Trump but was released by new President Joe Biden who had pledged during his 2020 political campaign to hold the Saudis accountable for Khashoggi’s murder.
Khashoggi wrote in his last column before he was killed about the need for a free press in the Arab world.
“A state-run narrative dominates the public psyche, and while many do not believe it, a large majority of the population falls victim to this false narrative,” Khashoggi said.
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