Saudi Official Threatened Special UN Investigator with Assassination

A senior Saudi official issued death threats against United Nations independent investigator, Agnès Callamard, after her investigation into the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

The outgoing special rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary and arbitrary killings told the Guardian that the threats were issued twice by an unnamed Saudi official in a meeting with other senior UN officials in Geneva in January 2020.

The official’s comments to have Callamard “taken care of” were understood by her colleagues as death threats, she said.

Callamard was the first official to look into the murder of former royal insider and Washington Post columnist Khashoggi, who was killed by Saudi agents in Istanbul in October 2018.

She published a detailed report in June 2019 where she concluded that there was credible evidence that the Saudi crown prince and other top officials were liable for the murder, calling it an “international crime.”

Callamard, a human rights expert, is set to join the human rights watchdog Amnesty International as secretary-general this month.

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