Dec 23, 2019

Washington Post responds to Saudi Arabia's Khashoggi death sentences

Jamal Khashoggi. Photo: Mohammed Al-Shaikh/AFP via Getty Images

Washington Post publisher Fred Ryan responded Monday to a Saudi Arabian court's decision to sentence five people to death for the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, saying those at the top of the Saudi government "continue to escape responsibility" for the murder.

Why it matters: The Saudi government continues to deny that Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman had any involvement in the assassination, despite the CIA concluding with "high confidence" last year that he ordered the assassination.

The full statement:

"The complete lack of transparency and the Saudi government's refusal to cooperate with independent investigators suggests that this was a sham trial. Those ultimately responsible, at the highest level of the Saudi government, continue to escape responsibility for the brutal murder of Jamal Khashoggi."

Go deeper: The year's biggest boxing match highlights Saudi Arabia's "sportswashing"

Go deeper

Saudis sentence 5 to death over Khashoggi's murder

Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia Mohammad bin Salman. Photo: Bandar Algaloud/Saudi Kingdom Council/Handout/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

A court in Saudi Arabia has sentenced five people to death for the killing of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi, and three others were sentenced to prison, AP reports.

Why it matters: The Saudis still deny that Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman had any knowledge or involvement in the assassination, despite the CIA concluding last year that he gave the order.

Go deeperArrowDec 23, 2019

WHCA: Trump's failure to disclose meeting with Saudi envoy is "disturbing"

President Trump with Prince Khalid bin Salman in the Oval Office, Jan. 7. Photo: via Khalid bin Salman, Twitter

White House Correspondents' Association President Jonathan Karl called the lack of transparency surrounding President Trump's meeting with the Saudi Arabia's deputy defense minister "disturbing," adding Monday's unannounced Oval Office visit broke precedent.

The big picture: Photos of the meeting, which included several senior White House advisers, were tweeted out Tuesday by Saudi Arabia's deputy defense minister, Prince Khalid bin Salman, indicating he delivered a message to Trump from his brother, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

Go deeperArrowJan 7, 2020

Saudi envoy arrives in Washington amid fear of U.S.-Iran war

President Trump and first lady Melania Trump take part in a welcome ceremony in Saudi Arabia accompanied Prince Khalid bin Salman in 2017. Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

A senior Saudi envoy has arrived in Washington and will meet Monday with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and senior White House and Pentagon officials in an attempt to de-escalate the crisis in the Gulf.

Why it matters: Saudi Deputy Defense Minister Prince Khalid bin Salman — a former ambassador to the U.S. — was urgently sent to Washington by his brother, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. Saudi Arabia is deeply concerned it could become engulfed in uncontrolled escalation between the U.S. and Iran following President Trump's decision to kill Iranian Gen. Qasem Soleimani.

Go deeperArrowJan 6, 2020