Saudi suspects in Khashoggi murder banned from entering UK

Saudi suspects in Khashoggi murder banned from entering UK
Prime Minister Theresa May announced Britian is revoking visas of Saudi Arabian suspects involved in the Istanbul consulate killing.
2 min read
24 October, 2018
Theresa May met Mohammad bin Salman in Riyadh in November 2017 [Anadolu]
Britain is to ban Saudi Arabian suspects involved in the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi from entering the country, following a similar move by the US.

"The Home Secretary is taking action against all suspects to prevent them entering the UK. If these individuals currently have visas, those visas will be revoked today," Prime Minister Theresa May told the House of Commons on Wednesday.

Khashoggi's death in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on 2 October has piled more pressure on May's government to scrap arms sales to Saudi Arabia, which has been waging a three-year bombing campaign in Yemen, spearheaded by Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman, the de facto leader also accused of ordering the hit on Khashoggi.

Asked whether she will join German Chancellor Angela Merkel's decision to suspend arms sales to Riyadh, May insisted that Britain's defence export controls were "among the strictest in the world".

She said the Saudi arms sales policy was "under review", echoing comments made by Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt in parliament on Monday.

May added that she will continue to pile diplomatic pressure on Saudi leaders to complete a swift and transparent investigation, and would be speaking to Saudi King Salman later on Wednesday.

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"The foreign secretary and the foreign ministers and our ambassador have been making our position very clear to the Saudi Arabians," she said.

"I myself expect to speak to King Salman later today."

A source familiar with the matter told The New Arab that one of the suspects - Maher Abdulaziz M. Mutreb - is a Saudi intelligence officer who was previously posted at the kingdom's embassy in London.

A Saudi source told Reuters on Saturday that Mutreb threatened Khashoggi at the consulate before his team killed him with a "chokehold".

Mutreb worked as a security officer at the Saudi embassy in London and is reportedly a colonel in the Kingdom's intelligence service, according to the BBC.

Mutreb has been photographed working among Prince Mohammed's security detail on trips outside the kingdom.