Jamal Khashoggi’s Disappearance and Death


Emerson Marquez, Opinions Editor

Jamal Khashoggi, a world renowned journalist and a critic of the Saudi government has been killed inside Saudi Arabian Consulate in Istanbul earlier this month.

On October 2, 2018 Khashoggi entered the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, Turkey. He was accompanied by his fiance, Hatice Cengiz, a Turkish citizen, who waited outside. He visited the consulate to obtain a documents that related to his planned marriage, but he ended up staying longer in the consulate than have ever planned to. Before entering he told his fiance that if he didn’t come back out, that she should report him missing too someone close to Turkey’s president, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. And when he didn’t come out till 4Pm, which is 30 minutes after the closing time, she reported him missing.

Photo Courtesy: REUTERS
Police gate outside of the Saudi consulate in Istanbul

A big issue with this situation is that he was a resident of the USA. So this ‘disappearance’ could have a lasting effect on the relationship between Saudi Arabia and America. And another thing to note is that evidence of his death have been continuously coming out, so certain things will not be included in this article because it is a developing story.

Here’s a quick timeline of events that took place after his disappearance on October 2. October 4: reports start coming out about his disappearance, and at the time the consulate said that he left through a backdoor.

October 6: Turkish officials say that he might of been killed inside of the consulate.

October 9: Turkish officials announced that they would search the consulate. Also Jamal’s fiance wrote an article in the Washington Post asking the US president to help urge the Saudis release CCTV footage of the consulate.

October 10-11: Trump is starting to get deeper into the situation, also saying “I think we’ll get to the bottom of it.” But he also talks about military deals with the Saudis and if we hurt our relationship with them it,”would be hurting us.”

October 14-15: As the situation is escalating multiple top companies and CEOs drop out of a upcoming Saudi planned business summit about investment. Also the planned search of the consulate by a joint team of Saudis and Turks goes ahead.

October 17-18: The Washington Post decides to release Khashoggi’s last column about free speech in the Arab states. President Trump’s view on the situation changes into him saying that it definitely looks like the journalist is dead.

October 19-20: A Saudi television station says a preliminary investigation has concluded that Khashoggi is dead. Which the television stations says results in the country’s intelligence chief was sacked and 18 people had been detained. And also a Saudi public prosecutor says that Khashoggi died from fist fight.

Protesters hold pictures of missing journalist Jamal Khashoggi outside of the Saudi Arabian consulate in Istanbul

Freedom of speech is a human right, and to have this journalists voice taken away is something serious that is happening to many other people around the world. But especially in the Arab states, where in the annual “Freedom in the World” Report only Tunisia was free. And before his death Khashoggi was trying to advocate for free speech for all people. “The Arab world needs a modern version of the old transnational media so citizens can be informed about global events,” Khashoggi wrote in his last column in the Washington Post. Sometimes we may take for granted what other people don’t have, and a thing that we greatly take for granted is freedom of speech.