Letter to MIT faculty regarding engagement with Saudi Arabia

Letter to MIT faculty regarding engagement with Saudi Arabia

Kerry Wise
October 23, 2018

"We're getting as many facts as we can from the different places; then we will determine which facts are credible and, after that, the President and Secretary of State will make a determination as to what we deem to be credible and what actions we think we should take", Kushner said at CitizenCNN in NY.

Over the weekend the Saudi government claimed that missing Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi was killed in a fistfight at the consulate in Istanbul and 15 Saudis are in custody for the murder.

The top Saudi diplomat offered his condolences to Khashoggi's family, but disclosed no new information about how the writer was killed or where his body is. They said the "hypotheses" proposed so far in the Saudi investigation need to be backed by facts to be considered credible.

The calls come after a leaked photograph, apparently taken from surveillance footage, showed Maher Abdulaziz Mutreb, a member of Prince Mohammed's entourage on foreign trips, at the consulate, just ahead of Khashoggi's arrival.

"These things unfortunately happen", al-Jubeir said. "Unfortunately, a huge and grave mistake was made and I assure them that those responsible will be held accountable for this".

A Saudi friend of Khashoggi - who was in frequent touch with him before his death - said that Khashoggi's son, Salah, has been under a travel ban and barred from leaving the kingdom since previous year as a result of his father's criticism of the government. He said he advised the crown prince to "be transparent".

Khashoggi vanished after entering the consulate to obtain documents for his upcoming marriage.

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By denying any knowledge of the dissident journalist's fate for weeks, the Saudi government has forfeited the civilized world's obligation to take the polite version seriously.

At last 18 people have been detained and several officials have been fired in relation to Khashoggi's death. "But Saudi Arabia is a very responsible country, for decades we used our oil policy as (a) responsible economic tool and isolated it from politics", al-Falih said.

"We're getting facts in from multiple places".

Saudi Arabia claims that Jamal Khashoggi died in a physical altercation inside its consulate in Istanbul. Local retail investors were also net sellers for the week, while Saudi institutions were net purchasers.

Turkish media quotes officials saying a team of 15 Saudis removed Khashoggi's fingers, killed him and dismembered him.

The remaining 17 personnel - who are Turkish and foreign nationals - are expected to appear at the courthouse to submit their testimonies as part of the Istanbul Chief Public Prosecutor's Office's probe, the sources added. Turkey's state-run news agency said both leaders agree the Khashoggi case needs to be "cleared up with all aspects".

"A lot of the reforms they've been making there to help us track down the terror financing and also to push back against the people who are perverting the religion, have been very historic over the previous year", he said.