Saudi Arabia launched two years after Jamal Khashoggi’s rights group

The US-based non-beneficiary, DAWN, aims to document and address rights violations in Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Egypt.

The rights organization, which was killed by Saudi journalist Jamal Khashogi months before his controversial assassination in 2018 at the hands of a Saudi hit squad in Turkey, has now opened in the United States.

Democracy’s official debut for Arab World Now (DAWN) preceded the second anniversary of the Washington Post contributor’s death at a virtual event in Washington, DC on Tuesday.

Khashogi, a critic of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MBS), was last seen on 2 October, 2018 at the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul, where he went to obtain documents for his impending marriage with Turkish fiancé Hattis Kengiz.

The 59-year-old elderly man was killed by drug intoxication. His body was reportedly removed from the building and his remains have not been found.

“In the summer of 2018, Jamal along with some of his friends founded DAWN, based on their belief that only democracy and freedom will bring lasting peace and security to the Middle East and North Africa,” said Sarah Leah Whitson, CEO of DAWN , A virtual news conference on Tuesday.

Saudi journalist Jamal Khashogi believed that democracy and freedom would help bring peace to the Middle East [File: Omar Shagaleh/Anadolu Agency]

Since his death, the organization remained mostly inactive.

“We’re going to maintain Jamal’s legacy,” Whitson said.

The US-based organization will primarily focus on documenting and addressing the abusive behavior and human rights violations of Washington-backed governments and US allies: Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Egypt. It aims to expand its work to cover other countries in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region in the future.

Speaking on the launch on Tuesday, US Senator Chris Kunz, a Democrat and a member of the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said that the nonprofit will help “be accountable to the US government … especially the way the Trump administration holds human rights Is. Its back legs and economy and military interest first “.

Crackdown on dissatisfaction

Khashogi’s assassination – a US resident – prompted a worldwide outcry against Saudi Arabia and caused permanent damage to MBS’s image in the international arena.

Khashogi, 59, wrote severely to the Saudi government.

He had been living in exile in the US for nearly a year, as the MBS left Saudi Arabia, attacking Saudi human rights activists, writers and critics of the state’s disastrous war in Yemen.

The role of MBS in ordering the assassination remains in question, with several Western intelligence agencies stating that they were already aware of the operation.

The crown prince has refused to order the assassination, but said he ultimately bears “full responsibility” as the de facto ruler of the state.

Earlier this month, a Saudi court sentenced five defendants to death after a closed-door trial in Saudi Arabia last year, in return for which they were sentenced to 20 years in prison.

In a separate case initiated in July, an Istanbul court began an attempt to absolve 20 other Saudis over the murder, ranging from two former aides to MBS.

On Monday, Turkish prosecutors inspired six new Saudis suspected of involvement in the 2018 murder.

Istanbul prosecutors are seeking life imprisonment for the two suspects and up to five years in prison for the remaining four, news agency Anadolu reported.

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