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Saudi rights official says pursuing justice for Khashoggi murder

15 March 2019

The head of the state-backed Saudi human rights commission dismissed an worldwide investigation into the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi as interference on Thursday, and said everyone accused was already facing justice in the kingdom.

The Red Notice was issued on March 1 upon Turkey's request, local NTV channel quoted Turkish Justice Ministry officials as saying.

Khashoggi, who worked as a contributor for The Washington Post, was an outspoken critic of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

The news came as Turkey slammed attempts by Saudi Arabia to shut down an global investigation into the journalist's killing.

On Thursday, Aiban said the suspects had faced three hearings so far in Saudi Arabia with their lawyers present. While he provided no names or details about the men who have been charged, he assured the 47-member council that Saudi Arabia is adhering to its own constitutional principles as well as worldwide law.

After making numerous contradictory statements, it said Khashoggi was killed after negotiations to persuade him to return to Saudi Arabia failed - and later that 11 Saudis had been indicted and referred for trial over the case, without identifying them.

Besides, the Red Notice was also issued for 15 suspects in the execution team while three for consulate employees, according to Turkish Justice Ministry.

"We would like to assume that Mr al-Aiban's remarks reflected his personal views rather than the official position of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia - our friend and kin".

The CIA concluded late previous year that bin Salman ordered the journalist's assassination, an accusation that has been echoed by United States senators and other observers.

The Saudi government has rejected key recommendations on critically important human rights problems, including the immediate release of all human rights defenders arbitrarily detained.

While Saudi Arabia has abolished the ban on women driving since its previous review, other government-enforced guardian restrictions remain in place, including on travel outside the country.

Saudi rights official says pursuing justice for Khashoggi murder