Six months after the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, U.S. President Donald Trump has still done nothing to hold those responsible accountable, The Washington Post said Monday.
In an opinion piece, the newspaper said it is widely believed that Khashoggi, a contributor to The Post, was murdered on the order of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. Yet Bin Salman as well as the coordinator of the operation, Saud al-Qahtani, have enjoyed freedom from repercussions.
Last October, Khashoggi entered the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, where he was subsequently killed. After offering a series of changing narratives to explain what happened, the Saudi government eventually admitted he had died there but blamed the operation on a botched rendition attempt.
“Now, half a year after this heinous act shocked the world, it is worth taking stock of what has been done in response — and what has not,” The Post wrote.
“Mohammed bin Salman has jetted around the world, high-fiving Russian President Vladimir Putin, getting chummy with China, and rubbing elbows with other world leaders as part of a global tour to rehabilitate his reputation,” it said.
The newspaper, however, applauded efforts by the international community to condemn the murder and call for action to be taken. Some 36 countries had united at the UN Human Rights Council to condemn the killing and call on the Saudis to cooperate with the investigation being conducted by the UN.
Congress also offered its own rebuke, passing a resolution to end U.S. support for the Saudi-led coalition’s war in Yemen and repeatedly investigated and criticized Washington’s response to the murder.
Meanwhile, Trump has taken a far different approach, according to The Post. The president has shied away from criticizing the crown prince and taking any further action against the kingdom other than placing sanctions on the 17 individuals the Saudi government has said were responsible for the act.
“In this impotent response, Trump isn’t just violating the law. He is also undermining the credibility and moral authority of the United States,” the newspaper wrote.
“Another six months cannot pass without accountability for this abhorrent crime. Justice for an innocent journalist — and America’s most crucial interests — require nothing less,” it added.