U.S. Sen. Martin Heinrich and two other Democrats want a public report on the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
Heinrich says that by not saying Saudi Arabia was responsible for Kashogghi’s death, the “White House is attempting to cover up a murder.”
Khashoggi was murdered in Istanbul at the Saudi Arabian Consulate in October. While Saudi officials at first denied Khashoggi was dead, they later admitted he died in the consulate.
The New York Times reported the Central Intelligence Agency concluded that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman ordered Khashoggi’s killing.
President Donald Trump disputed the finding, and received pushback from lawmakers of both parties, including some who said the president lied about the findings by U.S. intelligence.
The lame duck session bill calls for the public report from U.S. intelligence agencies. Along with Heinrich, Sens. Ron Wyden of Oregon and Jack Reed of Rhode Island introduced the legislation. Heinrich and Wyden are members of the U.S. Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, while Reed is an ex officio member of the committee and the ranking member of the U.S. Senate Armed Forces Committee.
“The United States must remain the world’s voice for human rights. But right now, in the case of the brutal murder of journalist and American resident Jamal Khashoggi, this White House is attempting to cover up a murder,” according to a statement from Heinrich. “The American people deserve nothing less than the truth and transparency about any role the Saudi government played in this shameful act. That starts with ensuring the public hears directly from the intelligence community identifying who carried out or ordered Mr. Khashoggi’s death.”
The press release also include a statement from Wyden, who said,“Bowing to the Saudi government over the murder of a Washington Post columnist is unacceptable for any American president, let alone one who claims to put America first.”