Jamal Khashoggi Murder: Saudi Arabia Sentencing Five People to Death Over Killing Is ‘Important Step’, Says US Official
Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi (Photo: Twitter)

Washington, December 24: A senior official of US State Department has said that Saudi Arabia's sentencing of five people to death over the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi is "an important step" to hold the perpetrators accountable. "Today's verdicts were an important step in holding those responsible for the terrible crime accountable," the official said on the condition of anonymity on Monday.

"We've encouraged Saudi Arabia to undertake a fair and transparent judicial process, and we will continue to do so," Xinhua quoted the official as saying. Five people were sentenced to death over the case of Khashoggi, and three others were given jail terms, Saudi Public Prosecution announced. Jamal Khashoggi Fiance Urges US to Investigate Saudi Journalist’s Assassination On Ethical Grounds: ‘He Was Violently Murdered’.

Saudi Public Prosecution Spokesperson Shalaan Al Shalaan noted that the former Deputy Intelligence Chief Ahmed al-Asiri was released for insufficient evidence. Saud al-Qahtani, the advisor at the Royal Court, was investigated in the case but was not charged. Khashoggi was murdered inside the Saudi consulate in Turkey in October 2018, and a number of top Saudi officials were arrested in connection with the case. The Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud also ordered to restructure the intelligent authority.