What we know about the Saudi suspects

FRENCH PRESS AGENCY - AFP
RIYADh
Published 17.11.2018 00:16
Updated 17.11.2018 00:18

It has been nearly a month-and-a-half since the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi on Oct. 2 in the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul. Legal statements say that Khashoggi's body was dismembered and later disposed of by a 15-member Saudi team.

Here is what we know about the Saudi nationals allegedly involved in the murder that has provoked an international outcry:

l A total of 21 people, all Saudi citizens, are in custody in connection with the Khashoggi murder, the Saudi prosecution said without disclosing their identities.

Of the 21 suspects, 11 have been indicted, while investigations are to continue into the others.

The prosecution said it was seeking the death penalty against five individuals who "are charged with ordering and committing the crime."

Five Saudi officials sacked

On Oct. 20, Riyadh announced the sacking of five Saudi officials - two of them part of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman's (MBS) inner circle - and the detention of 18 suspects, whose names were not released.

General Ahmad al-Assiri, who was fired as deputy head of intelligence, was implicated in the prosecutor's statement that said a "former" deputy intelligence chief ordered the "leader of the mission" to "bring back the victim by means of persuasion, and if persuasion fails, to do so by force."

Royal media advisor Saud al-Qahtani has also been fired. Although not named by the prosecution, the statement said a "former advisor" played a central role in the operation.

Mohammed al-Rumaih, Abdullah al-Shaya and Rashad al-Muhamadi, who all held posts in the country's intelligence service, were sacked in the wake of the Khashoggi killing.

U.S. sanctions 17 Saudis

The United States on Thursday slapped economic sanctions on 17 Saudis allegedly involved in the Khashoggi murder. Among them are:

al-Qahtani for "being part of the planning and execution of the operation that led to the killing" of Khashoggi, the U.S. Treasury said in a statement.

Maher Mutreb, a close aide to MBS, who "coordinated and executed" the operation.

Mohammed al-Otaibi, the Saudi consul in Istanbul, where the journalist was killed.

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