An international crime: Journalist Jamal Khashoggi was killed in the Saudi Consulate in Turkey and punitive sanctions are required – Joint   Statement  of the Association of European Journalists and Journalist Support Committee on 21 October 2018

The Association of European Journalists (AEJ) and the Journalist Support Committee (JSC) express their horror and dismay at the Saudi authorities‘ announcement about what they have said was the „accidental killing“ of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi inside the Saudi consulate in Turkey. The announcement makes clear that the assassination of Khashoggi is a crime of international dimensions with far-reaching implications that requires serious and international efforts to pursue the murderers and the masterminds, who must face justice before an independent international tribunal.

The Association of European Journalists (AEJ) and the Journalist Support Committee (JSC)  call on the Turkish authorities to disclose all the available information related to this crime. Our organisations urge strenuous, independent and transparent investigations to determine the motives and the full facts about the circumstances of this crime and to determine the whereabouts of the journalist Khashoggi’s remains.

The AEJ and the JSC both insist on full accountability for this appalling murder through a prompt and effective international investigation which must determine the identities of every person involved in this crime, including the perpetrators and those who ordered it, and ensure that there is no impunity for anyone who is found to be responsible.

The Association of European Journalists and the Journalist Support Committee fully support the statement of the Director-General of UNESCO, Audrey Azoulay, who condemned the crime and urged “fighting for press freedom since it is an essential element for the establishment of democracy”. She also spoke of an imperative need for these crimes to be subject to accountability, saying that „this is not debatable.” The AEJ also welcomes the calls of EU authorities for an impartial investigation.

The AEJ and the JSC further call for a thorough, independent review of the record of violations by the Saudi authorities of fundamental human rights through political decisions or laws that infringe the international principles set out in the International Covenants on Civil and Political Rights as well as Economic and Social Rights. The JSC also renews its call for the release of all prisoners of conscience detained in the prisons of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.