Hettis Cengiz ask Donald Trump not to help “cover-up”
Mounting pressure on Saudi Arabia’s royal rulers and US President Donald Trump on Jamal Khashoggi’s killings at Istanbul, Hettis Cengiz, the fiancée of murdered journalist has demanded that Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman reveal the whereabouts of his dead body.
While speaking to an audience in London, she said, “I believe that the Saudi regime knows where his body is: they should answer my demand, for this is not only the demand of a fiancée but a human and Islamic demand.”
In a moving tribute to Khashoggi she called on the international community to ensure there is no cover-up of his murder. This was her first public appearance after the killing of the journalist. Earlier, she was interviewed by Haberturk TV, Turkish state news network.
She said: “I want justice to be served – not only for those who murdered my beloved Jamal but for those who organized it and gave the order for it. These questions are not just my questions: they are being asked by millions”.
She further asserted, “I want the role of the political leadership in this brutal killing to be brought to light.”
The homage meeting was organized by Middle East Monitor and the Al Sharq Forum. Most speakers placed the blame for his death squarely on the shoulders of Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman.
She said that Khashoggi’s death had left a “void” in her life and had turned him into a “martyr” for the “cause of democracy in Saudi Arabia”. The journalist was critical of the Saudi leadership on several issues, including war against Yemen and arrests of activists and opponents in the kingdom. He left the Kingdom in 2017 for US after growing fearful for his safety.
Earlier she said that Khashoggi was not apprehending any risk in visiting Kingdom’s Consulate in Istanbul after his smooth visit on September 28. He was in Istanbul to get re-married. Hettis Cengiz was waiting outside of the mission on October 2, when he did not emerge.
It was accepted by Saudi government sources that 15-member team was sent to Istanbul to interrogate Khashoggi and exert pressure for returning to homeland. However, as the official statement said, “the interrogation went wrong” and one of the team member applied “chokehold” resulting into his death.
In an emotional description of the incident, she said, “If only I knew what would happen, I would have entered the consulate myself… If only I knew that there were bloodthirsty, evil people waiting inside the consulate for my Jamal, I would have done all I could to prevent him from entering.”
Cengiz also criticized US President Donald Trump who has limited his criticism of the Saudi leader and stressed the importance to the American economy of arms sales to the country.
“I am, however, disappointed in the actions of the leadership in many countries, particularly in the US. President Trump should help reveal the truth and ensure justice be served. He should not pave the way for a cover-up of my fiancée’s murder. Let’s not let money taint our conscience and compromise our values,” she added.
Speaking on the occasion, Sarah Leah Whitson, executive director of the Middle East and North Africa division of Human Rights Watch, described Khashoggi as “the Saudi man who would not bow down”.
She said the murder had revealed the crown prince “not only to be a reckless, sadistic murderer … but an unreliable and treacherous ally”. She further said, “No foreign leader who is not enslaved to Saudi Arabia financially would dare to be seen standing next to him. He is now exposed as the greatest liability for Saudi Arabia in its short history.”