Blinken marks Khashoggi murder as ‘attack on freedom of expression everywhere’
Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Sunday marked four years since the 2018 murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
“Jamal Khashoggi’s murder 4 years ago was also an attack on freedom of expression everywhere,” Blinken said on Twitter Sunday.
“As we mourn Jamal, we’ll continue to stand with and support human rights defenders, journalists, and others to protect fundamental freedoms worldwide,” the secretary added.
US intelligence agencies have found that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman approved Khashoggi’s murder at the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul.
Khashoggi was a U.S.-based journalist and Washington Post columnist critical of the crown prince.
President Biden during his 2020 campaign promised to make Saudi Arabia a “pariah” over the incident, but he traveled to Riyadh in July and met with bin Salman, drawing criticism for fist-bumping the crown prince in greeting.
Biden said after the visit that he had told bin Salman that he thought he was responsible for Khashoggi’s death, but reported that the Saudi leader denied personal responsibility. Saudi officials said Biden didn’t mention Khashoggi.
A recent Wall Street Journal report released last week found a government panel recommended that Biden declassify the full report on the 2018 murder a few weeks before Biden’s Saudi Arabia trip.