The fiancée of murdered journalist Jamal Khashoggi had a message for President Joe Biden in the wake of news that he's agreed to meet with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman during his visit to the Middle East next month, saying Biden is "dishonoring himself” and “putting oil over principles,” The New York Post reports.
Khashoggi, a Virginia resident who was a contributor to The Washington Post, was lured to the Saudi consulate in Istanbul and murdered by Saudi operatives. US intelligence believes Mohammed bin Salman ordered the murder.
“Mr. President, I beseech you not to lose your moral authority or overlook this heinous crime,” Hatice Cengiz said in a videotaped message Wednesday. “You must uphold your role to bring all the perpetrators of this brutal crime to justice.”
“Like me, you intimately know grief, pain and sorrow,” she said, referring to the daughter Biden and his first wife lost to a car accident. “You understand how it is very, very difficult to recover … But unlike your losses, the person I loved was brutally murdered, and I’m being forced to live in a world where his murderers have not only been unpunished, but also been rewarded."
“As disappointing as this is, if you have to put oil over principles, and expediency over values, can you at least ask, ‘Where is Jamal’s body? Doesn’t he deserve a proper burial? And what happened to his killers?'” she continued.
As The New York Post points out, White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre told reporters that Cengiz’s words were “devastating,” but wouldn't say whether Biden would bring up Khashoggi’s murder with MBS during his visit.
“First, I want to say you know, just hearing that it’s devastating, right?” Jean-Pierre said. “It is Jamal Khashoggi’s widow, and so clearly our hearts go out to her and the pain that she’s currently going through.”