UN scandal: Saudi official promised to “take care” of Special Rapporteur




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A senior Saudi official denies threatening to harm the UN Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial executions, Agnes Callamard, who led the international investigation into the murder of opposition journalist Jamal Khashoggi after the world organization confirmed its expert's version of the threat.





Agnes Callamard previously said that at a meeting in Geneva in January 2020, the head of the Saudi Commission on Human Rights, Awwad Alawwad, threatened that she would be “taken care of” if she “did not restrain the investigation into the murder of a journalist,” Reuters reports today, March 25.

According to her, this remark was interpreted by the UN representatives as a “threat of murder”. The UN last Wednesday confirmed Callamard's version of events, calling the Saudi official's statement a “ threat.”

“It has come to my attention that Ms. Agnes Callamard and some UN officials believe that I somehow veiled a threat against her more than a year ago,” Alawwad said in a statement. — Although I can't recall exactly what those conversations were, I would never wish or threaten to harm a person designated by the UN or anyone for that matter.”

The representative of the kingdom further described himself as a “defender of human rights” and added: “I am disappointed that everything I have said can be interpreted as a threat.”

Agnes Callamard led the UN-initiated investigation into the murder of Saudi opposition journalist Jamal Khashoggi in October 2018 by Saudi agents at the kingdom's Consulate General in Istanbul. In 2019, it published a report that concluded there was “credible evidence” that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and other senior officials of the Arab monarchy were involved in the crime.





Callamard's claim that she was threatened was first published in the British newspaper The Guardian on Tuesday, March 23. The next day, UN spokesman Rupert Colville said: “We confirm that the details in The Guardian article about the threat against Agnes Callamard are correct.”

Recall that the murder of Jamal Khashoggi, whose last place of work was The Washington Post, received a great resonance in the world, primarily due to the alleged involvement of the highest representatives of the Al-Saud royal family. Based on the data provided by the Turkish side (audio recordings and video materials), the US special services prepared a report in which the name of Crown Prince Mohammed appeared among the direct customers of the physical elimination of Khashoggi. Five people were sentenced to death in December 2019 in Saudi Arabia in the case of the murder of a journalist. Three more defendants received long prison sentences by the decision of the kingdom's court.


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