Biden will be quickly tested on promise to give Khashoggi justice - Washington Post

U.S. President-elect Joe Biden will quickly face a choice between enabling Saudi Arabia’s cover-up of the murder of Jamal Khashoggi, or fulfilling his campaign promise to ensure accountability, Washington Post columnist Josh Rogin said on Thursday.

Khashoggi, a former Washington Post contributor, was killed after entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on Oct. 2, 2018. He had previously been accused of criticising Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman.

Rogin said outgoing U.S. President Donald Trump had sought to block the release of information into what his government knew of the killing to protect relations with Saudi Arabia, but Biden had promised to “bring crucial facts of the case to light”.

In a campaign statement in October, Biden said: “Jamal Khashoggi and his loved ones deserve accountability.”

And Biden’s commitment to justice for Khashoggi will be tested “just weeks after he is inaugurated”, when the issue will be raised at the confirmation hearing for his director of national intelligence, Rogin said.

In 2019, the U.S. Congress passed legislation requiring the Office of the Director of National Intelligence to publish reports naming those believed to be behind Khashoggi’s killing. But only redacted versions of the documents were published under Trump.

Lawsuits seeking other internal U.S. documents relating to the Khashoggi investigation are set to take place early next year, providing further tests cases for the Biden administration, Rogin said.

“Campaign promises are easy; governing is hard. But this issue won’t wait. And justice delayed is justice denied.”