FILE PHOTO: Vigil is held at Saudi Embassy for Journalist Jamal Khashoggi
The press freedom group said its complaint shows ‘the widespread and systematic nature of the persecution of journalists in Saudi Arabia,’ highlighting the detention of 34 journalists and the killing of Jamal Khashoggi.

Reporters Without Borders said Tuesday it filed a criminal complaint in Germany against five Saudi officials, including Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, saying they were responsible for crimes against humanity.
 
The press freedom group said its complaint shows “the widespread and systematic nature of the persecution of journalists in Saudi Arabia,” highlighting the detention of 34 journalists and the killing of Jamal Khashoggi.
 
“The 35 cases detailed in the complaint reveal a system that threatens the life and liberty of any journalist in Saudi Arabia -- in particular those who speak out publicly against the Saudi government,” the group said in a statement.
 
The development follows the release last week of a declassified U.S. intelligence report assessing the crown prince approved the murder of Khashoggi in the Saudi consulate in Turkey.
 
Khashoggi was lured to the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 2, 2018, and killed by operatives linked to the crown prince. His body was dismembered, and his remains have never been found.  
 
Saudi Arabia eventually said Khashoggi was mistakenly killed in what it called a rogue operation but denied the crown prince’s involvement.   
 
Saudi officials have rejected the U.S. intelligence report, including again Monday when the Saudi Ambassador to the U.S. Abdallah Al-Mouallimi tweeted that it was “based on could've, should've and would've and does not rise to anywhere close to proving the accusation beyond reasonable doubt.”
 
Monday also brought renewed calls for justice from Khashoggi’s fiancée, Hatice Cengiz, who said Crown Prince Mohammed “should be punished without delay.”
 
In a statement posted on Twitter, Cengiz said if the crown prince faces no punishment, “it will forever signal that the main culprit can get away with murder which will endanger us all and be a stain on our humanity.”

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