Khashoggi’s fiance to visit US in mid-May, plans to renew quest for justice

Washington: Hatice Cengiz, widow of journalist Jamal Khashoggi has renewed her quest to seek answers for the alleged murder of her partner as she plans to visit the United States in mid-May.

“I am not a politician, but I can talk about what is moral,” Cengiz told The New York Times.
“I don’t know if I can change the mind of a president,” she added.

Unclear whether an earlier invitation from the White House is still open, Cengiz is hoping to meet members of Congress, if not Trump himself.

Last year, US President Donald Trump had made it clear that Washington will not change relations with Saudi Arabia against rising condemnation of Saudi Arabia and vowed support for Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman Al Saud, who has been linked to the disappearance and possible murder of the former journalist inside the Saudi consulate in Turkey last October.

Cengiz said, “I am not a politician, but I can talk about what is moral,” adding, “I don’t know if I can change the mind of a president.”

The body of Khashoggi, a former columnist with The Washington Post has never been recovered.
Saudi authorities have said that Saudi agents strangled and dismembered the dissident and that five suspects now face the death penalty. However, many questions remain unanswered such as whether the Crown Prince ordered the operation, involving his close aides.

Khashoggi first met Hatice Cengiz at a conference in Istanbul in 2018, and after numerous interactions, the two connected and Khashoggi asked for her hand in marriage.

Everything changed in early October last year when Khashoggi went to the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul for documents that would allow him to marry Cengiz.

Once he entered the consulate, he was subsequently killed. After offering a series of changing narratives to explain what happened, the Saudi government eventually admitted he had died there but blamed the operation on a botched rendition attempt, Anadolu news agency reported.

However, Saudi Arabia has repeatedly rejected all the allegations against its Crown Prince, adding that it is committed to bringing the perpetrators to justice.

UN’s special rapporteur on extrajudicial killings, Agnes Callamard, leading the investigations into Khashoggi’s death, had confirmed that evidence showed the latter to be a victim of “a brutal and premeditated killing, planned and perpetrated by officials of the state of Saudi Arabia”.

After presenting several contradictory theories, Saudi Arabia acknowledged that Khashoggi was killed in the consulate premises in what the country’s then Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir had described as a “rogue operation”.


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