Jamal Khashoggi: From Saudi royal insider to open critic

Jamal Khashoggi: From Saudi royal insider to open critic thumbnail
DUBAI: A complex man of contradictions, journalist Jamal Khashoggi went from being a Saudi royal family insider to an outspoken critic of the ultra-conservative kingdom’s government, and was ultimately killed inside its consulate in Istanbul.

In his final column for The Washington Post, Khashoggi perhaps presciently pleaded for greater freedom of expression in the Middle East.

“The Arab world is facing its own version of an Iron Curtain, imposed not by external actors but through domestic forces vying for power,” he wrote.

“The Arab world needs a modern version of the old transnational media so citizens can be informed about global events. More important, we need to provide a platform for Arab voices,” Khashoggi wrote.

The Saudi journalist — who disappeared after entering his country’s consulate in Istanbul on October 2 — went into self-imposed exile in the United States in 2017 after falling out with Saudi Arabia’s powerful Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

His disappearance was initially shrouded in mystery, and triggered an international crisis for both Riyadh and Washington as Turkish officials accused Saudi Arabia of a state-sponsored killing.

Riyadh, after insisting that Khashoggi left its consulate alive, said more than two weeks afterwards that he died in a “brawl” that arose from a dispute with people he met there.

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