The International Association of Democratic Lawyers issued the following statement on the murder of Jamal Khashoggi at its Bureau meeting in Lisbon, Portugal, on 2 December 2018:
Taking note that the Saudi journalist, Jamal Khashoggi, who worked for the Washington Post, was lured into the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul and entered the said consulate on 2nd October 2018, never to be seen again, and that
The Government of Saudi Arabia initially denied knowledge of his whereabouts, then claimed that he left, then that he accidentally died, then that some rogue elements have murdered him; then it announced that his remains were given to a local Turkish undertaker to bury, and that
The Saudi authorities refused the Turkish police permission to attend the scene of the crime for more than ten days and recalled the Consul so as for him not to be interviewed, and that
The Saudi Government started its own investigation by announcing that it has detained some 18 suspects; some are extremely high officials in the intelligence service, including a close associate and confidante of the Crown Prince, Mohammed Bin Salman, holding a Minister’s rank, and that
Despite the passage of more than 40 days on the Saudi authorities’ formal announcement that it was a premeditated murder in which the body was brutally cut to pieces, they have not since formally disclosed the identity of all the suspects, the preparation and sequence of acts that led to the murder, the dispatch of the assassination team to Istanbul and those who gave the orders to commit the murder, and that
The voice recordings of the Turkish authorities, as well as the US intelligence services, have established beyond any reasonable doubt that the murder was committed be a team of assassins sent from Saudi Arabia to commit a heinous murder of a journalist on Turkish soil, though in a Saudi diplomatic mission, and that the body of Mr. Khashoggi was mutilated and the pieces were disposed of in a manner that is yet to be ascertained;
The International Association of Democratic Lawyers:
- Condemns this murder in the strongest terms, in the name of its members in dozens of countries around the world.
- Expresses its serious concern about the abuse of provisions of the 1961 and 1963 Vienna Conventions which guarantee the inviolability of embassies and consular offices, where such protection was intended for legitimate purposes and not to protect or cover up extrajudicial killing or murder. Such killings are a violation of international law and thus are fundamentally in violation of the Convention.
- Condemns the prevention of investigating the commission of a crime which is contrary to the law of all countries.
- Condemns the refusal of Saudi Arabia to cooperate in the investigation or bring people to justice.
- Condemns the violation of the laws of host countries by diplomatic missions.
- Condemns the refusal of the USA to assist in resolving this matter by abandoning moral, ethical and legal obligations for commercial consideration, and expresses concern about the failure of the U.S. intelligence service to abide by its “duty to warn” Khashoggi of the impending threat to his life.
- Condemns the failure of the European countries to uphold principles of justice by treating this murder as a political or commercial issue by imposing nominal penalties and rendering lip service only. IADL believes such attitude by important states like the USA and Europe gives the wrong signal to crimes to be committed by states.
- Condemns this action, which comes as part of a longtime Saudi policy of eliminating dissent through extrajudicial killing, parajudicial killings, unjust judicial procedures, or other types of apparently state-sanctioned violence.
Photo: April Brady / POMED