Arab autocratic regimes back Saudi ally amid Khashoggi uproar

Arab autocratic regimes back Saudi ally amid Khashoggi uproar
Egypt and other regimes allied to Saudi Arabia are coming out in defence of Riyadh over missing journalist uproar
2 min read
15 October, 2018
A statement issued by Cairo called for a transparent investigation [Getty]

The regime of Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi in Egypt and other autocratic Arab governments allied to Saudi Arabia are coming out in defence of Riyadh over the uproar surrounding the case of missing journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Egypt stood behind Saudi Arabia amid accusations surrounding the disappearance and presumed murder of Khashoggi on Sunday, calling for an urgent transparent investigation into the case.

“Egypt stresses the importance of revealing the truth of what happened in a transparent investigation,” its foreign ministry said in a statement.

The country said it was monitoring developments “with concern” and supported Saudi Arabia’s efforts to deal with the situation, the statement added.

Egypt joins Jordan, the Saudi-backed government in Yemen, the Palestinian Authority in Ramallah, as well as Bahrain, the UAE and Kuwait in voicing support for Riyadh.

Many of these regimes depend on regular Saudi financial aid.

Khashoggi, a vocal critic of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, went missing when he visited the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul.

Turkish officials fear Khashoggi was killed and dismembered, allegations Saudi officials call "baseless" but provide no counter-evidence to explain his fate.

On Sunday, Turkish sources told Al-Jazeera that investigators' requests have repeatedly been ignored by their Saudi counterparts in a joint investigation into Khashoggi's fate.

"The Turkish team have inquired more than once for an appropriate date to search the consulate and the nearby house of the consul but have yet to receive a response," the sources said.

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said Riyadh was failing to cooperate in the probe.

"We still have not seen cooperation in order to ensure a smooth investigation and bring everything to light. We want to see this," Cavusoglu said.

He said Riyadh must let Turkish "prosecutors and experts enter the consulate" to carry out their investigation.

The reports of Saudi authorities hampering the investigation come as Britain, France and Germany called for a credible investigation into Khashoggi's disappearance.

The EU countries made the demand in a joint statement on Sunday.

"There needs to be a credible investigation to establish the truth about what happened, and - if relevant - to identify those bearing responsibility for the disappearance of Jamal Khashoggi, and ensure that they are held to account," they said.

While expressing support for joint Saudi-Turkish efforts to look into his disappearance, they said the Saudi government must provide "a complete and detailed response", indicating that such a message had been conveyed "directly" to Riyadh.

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