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Khashoggi fiancée: Not punishing Saudi crown prince would be 'stain on our humanity'

Khashoggi fiancée: Not punishing Saudi crown prince would be 'stain on our humanity'
© Aaron Schwartz

Hatice Cengiz, the onetime fiancée of Jamal Khashoggi, said it would be a “stain on humanity” if Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman is not penalized in connection with the journalist's 2018 killing.

“It is essential that the crown prince ... should be punished without delay,” she said in a statement posted to Twitter. “If the crown prince is not punished, it will forever signal that the main culprit can get away with murder which will endanger us all and be a stain on our humanity.”

“Starting with the Biden administration, it is vital for all world leaders to ask themselves if they are prepared to shake hands with a person whose culpability as a murderer has been proven, but not yet punished,” she added.

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A U.S. intelligence report declassified last week concluded that the crown prince, the kingdom’s de facto ruler, ordered Khashoggi’s killing in a Saudi consulate in Istanbul. The Biden administration has announced sanctions on several people alleged to have been involved but not the crown prince himself. The Saudi government, which has denied involvement in the killing, rejected the report's conclusions.

Sen. Chris CoonsChris Andrew CoonsBiden to meet Monday with bipartisan lawmakers about infrastructure Buttigieg: Biden will have 'open mind' toward changes to infrastructure bill Five takeaways from Biden's first budget proposal MORE (D-Del.), a confidant of President BidenJoe BidenFederal Reserve chair: Economy would have been 'so much worse' without COVID-19 relief bills Biden to meet Monday with bipartisan lawmakers about infrastructure Jill Biden gives shout out to Champ, Major on National Pet Day MORE, said Sunday that he believes the U.S. is “recalibrating” its relationship with the Saudis.

"I am optimistic that our role in terms of the war in Yemen, the accountability here for Khashoggi's murder and other ways in which the U.S.-Saudi relationship may change will in fact deliver the accountability that I called for," he told CNN’s Dana BashDana BashBiden's first presser wasn't about him — not really Blinken suggests US won't take punitive action on China over COVID-19 Senator scolds Georgia governor: 'He knows better' MORE on “State of the Union.”

“We are not yet done with recalibrating the relationship between the United States and the Saudi kingdom,” he added.