Khashoggi: Saudi Arabia "completely rejects" report; UAE supports kingdom
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Khashoggi: Saudi Arabia ‘completely rejects’ report; UAE supports kingdom

Khashoggi: Saudi Arabia ‘completely rejects’ report; UAE supports kingdom

Saudi Arabia said that the US intelligence committee report, which believed that the crown prince was responsible for Khashoggi murder, contained “inaccurate information and conclusions”

Jamal Khashoggi

Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs has said that the kingdom “completely rejects the negative, false and unacceptable assessment in the report pertaining to the kingdom’s leadership” that was submitted to the US Congress last week regarding the killing of Jamal Khashoggi.

A statement carried by the state-run Saudi Press Agency (SPA) added that “report contained inaccurate information and conclusions.”

The Joe Biden administration in the US on Friday released a partially redacted report the Trump administration had withheld from the public, revealing that the US intelligence committee believed the crown prince of Saudi Arabia was responsible for Khashoggi’s October 2018 murder inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul.

The Saudi Ministry of Foreign Affairs added it reiterates the country’s previously announced stance that the murder was an abhorrent crime and a flagrant violation of the kingdom’s laws and values.

“This crime was committed by a group of individuals that have transgressed all pertinent regulations and authorities of the agencies where they were employed. 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 statement noted.

In September, five men were sentenced to 20 years in prison, one was condemned to 10 years and two were given seven-year terms for their involvement in the murder.

Read: Khashoggi Verdict: No death penalty for accused in final Saudi ruling

It further added: “It is truly unfortunate that this report, with its unjustified and inaccurate conclusions, is issued while the kingdom had clearly denounced this heinous crime, and the kingdom’s leadership took the necessary steps to ensure that such a tragedy never takes place again. The kingdom rejects any measure that infringes upon its leadership, sovereignty, and the independence of its judicial system.”

The ministry stated that ties with US were “robust” and termed the relationship with US as an “enduring partnership.”

Several GCC countries have come out in support of Saudi Arabia’s stance. The UAE expressed its support for the Saudi Arabian Foreign Ministry’s statement regarding Jamal Khashoggi.

In a statement issued on Saturday, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation expressed its confidence in and support for the Saudi judiciary, as well as Saudi Arabia’s commitment to enforcing the law with transparency and integrity, and holding those responsible to account, reported state news agency WAM.

The UAE ministry affirmed the UAE’s solidarity with Saudi Arabia in its efforts to maintain stability and security in the region and its key role in the axis of Arab moderation and security. It too expressed the UAE’s rejection of any attempts to exploit the case or interfere in Saudi internal affairs.

Kuwait too supported the Saudi government’s rejection of the report, its Foreign Ministry said on Saturday.

Saudi Arabia, under the leadership of King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, plays an important role regionally and internationally in its rejection of violence and extremism, Kuwait’s ministry said in a statement published by the Kuwait News Agency. It added that it too rejects any remark that might affect Saudi Arabia’s sovereignty.

Oman too expressed its solidarity with Saudi Arabia in its position regarding the report. In a statement issued, the Omani Ministry of Foreign Affairs commended the efforts and actions of the competent judicial authorities in the kingdom regarding the case and its circumstances.

Secretary General of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Dr. Yousef bin Ahmed Al-Othaimeen affirmed his support for the statement issued by the Saudi too and stressed the categorical “rejection of the incorrect inductions cited in the report, which has no decisive proofs, affirming the rejection of prejudice and abuse to the kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s leadership, sovereignty and independence of its judiciary,” noted a statement on SPA.

He expressed support for all judicial measures that were undertaken against the culprits “who have been brought to justice.”

The Arab Parliament also affirmed its support for the statement issued by the kingdom’s foreign ministry regarding the report, “expressing its categorical rejection to prejudice the sovereignty of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and everything that would prejudice its leadership and independence of its judiciary,” SPA noted. It added that Saudi plays a “pivotal role” in “consolidating security and stability in the Arab region and at the regional level.”

With inputs from Bloomberg

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