November 27, 2018

Wyden, Heinrich, Reed Introduce Bill Requiring Public Report on Khashoggi Murder by Saudi Arabia

Following Conflicting Statements by Trump and Silence from IC Leaders, Wyden Bill Requires Public Assessment of Killing of Washington Post Columnist

Washington, D.C. –Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., Sen. Martin Heinrich, D-N.M., and Sen. Jack Reed, D-R.I., introduced legislation today requiring a public report on the killing of Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi, following Donald Trump’s announcement that his administration will not respond to Khashoggi’s killing by Saudi officials.

“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,” said Senator Wyden. “Donald Trump claims that ‘we may never know’ who is responsible for ordering the murder of Jamal Khashoggi. I disagree. Today I’m introducing legislation requiring a public assessment from our intelligence leaders about who is responsible for planning and executing Mr. Khashoggi’s brutal murder.”

“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,” said Senator 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.”

"Mr. Khashoggi was a U.S. resident and a Washington Post columnist when he was lured to his murder, and the American people deserve to know the truth.  But Saudi leaders lied about his killing, and continue to engage in a cover up," said Senator Reed, the Ranking Member of the Armed Services Committee and an ex officio member of the Intelligence Committee.  "Instead of standing up for American values and basic human rights, President Trump has largely ignored this brutal murder.  It is inconceivable that such an operation would be conducted without the awareness of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.  So we are calling for an unclassified, public assessment of who ordered the killing and why.  We must ensure all individuals who played a role in directing, planning, and carrying out the murder are held accountable." 

The full bill text is available here.