Khashoggi fiancee sues MBS, Saudi officials in US over murder

Updated 21 Oct 2020

Email

In this 2018 file photo, Hatice Cengiz, fiancee of slain Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, is seen during an interview in London, Britain. — Reuters/File
In this 2018 file photo, Hatice Cengiz, fiancee of slain Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, is seen during an interview in London, Britain. — Reuters/File

WASHINGTON: The fiancee of journalist Jamal Khashoggi sued Saudi Arabia’s crown prince and other officials on Tuesday in a US court, seeking damages for his brutal murder in Istanbul two years ago.

Turkish citizen Hatice Cengiz and the human rights group Khashoggi formed before his death, Democracy for the Arab World Now (DAWN), is pursuing Mohammed bin Salman and 28 others for damages over the October 2, 2018 killing of the US-based writer.

Cengiz claims personal injury and financial losses over Khashoggi’s death, while DAWN said its operations and objectives were hampered by the loss of its founder and central figure.

“The ruthless torture and murder of Mr Khashoggi shocked the conscience of people throughout the world,” the suit said.

“The objective of the murder was clear — to halt Mr Khashoggi’s advocacy in the United States, principally as the executive director of plaintiff DAWN, for democratic reform in the Arab world.”

Cengiz and DAWN said they filed the suit in Washington federal court because they saw no chance for justice in Saudi Arabia, known for its opaque courts, and Turkish legal experts said the civil case would not go forward while Ankara pursues a criminal case over the murder. The suit alleges that the plot against him involved the Saudi embassy in Washington, which directed him to travel to Istanbul to obtain the documents needed for their marriage. It also says his murder damaged the operations of DAWN, which is based in Washington.

Published in Dawn, October 21st, 2020