British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt, French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian, and German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas call for a “credible investigation” to take place.

The United Kingdom, Germany and France have banded together to demand answers over the disappearance of Jamal Khashoggi. According to Al Jazeera, the trio have requested that Saudi and Turkish authorities “provide a complete and detailed response” to the disappearance of the prominent Saudi journalist.

The calls were backed by British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt, French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian, and German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas.

Defending freedom of expression and a free press and ensuring the protection of journalists are key priorities for Germany, the United Kingdom and France,” a joint statement read.

“In this spirit, light must be shed on the disappearance of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, whose family has lost contact with him since October 2nd.

The announcement comes in light of audio recordings surfacing – either from Jamal Khashoggi’s Apple iWatch or from bugged surveillance – proving his murder. Khashoggi, once an advisor to the Saudi royal family, fell out of favour with the regime following his criticism of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s reform programme. The joint statement also stressed the need for a “credible investigation” to take place.

There needs to be a credible investigation to establish the truth about what happened – and if relevant – to identify those bearing responsibility for the disappearance of Jamal Khashoggi, and ensure they are held to account, the statement read.

We encourage joint Saudi-Turkish efforts in that regard, and expect the Saudi government to provide a complete and detailed response. We have conveyed this message directly to the Saudi authorities.

In light of the global pressure mounting on Saudi Arabia, the kingdom said it would retaliate against any sanctions imposed on it over the disappearance of the journalist.

The kingdom affirms its total rejection of any threats or attempts to undermine it whether through threats to impose economic sanctions or the use of political pressure,” an official source said, adding that the country will “respond to any action with a bigger one.

The investigation continues.

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Author

Omar Hajjar is a journalist based in the UK. An investigative reporter, he has lived in 3 different countries in the Middle East over the past 10 years.

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