WASHINGTON (Good Politic) – Congressmen called for the protection of press freedom around the world Thursday by paying tribute to a Saudi editorialist based in the United States who was killed inside the consulate of his country in Turkey in October.
House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Representatives Adam Schiff of California, and Senator Mark Warner of Virginia attended a Capitol event marking the 100th anniversary of the writer's murder. Jamal Khashoggi.
Pelosi said Congress was committed to ensuring that those responsible for his assassination were held accountable.
"We must honor our moral responsibility to protect the lives and freedoms of domestic and foreign journalists," she told a chamber of lawmakers, journalists and activists.
"If we decide that commercial interests should prevail over the statements we make and the actions we take, we must admit that we have lost all moral authority," she said.
Khashoggi wrote for the Washington Post of opinion columns criticizing the government of his country, Saudi Arabia, and his assassination has strained the ties that unite Saudi Arabia in the United States for decades. Post-editor Fred Ryan was also present at the event.
Pelosi called on the United States to face threats against journalists around the world and promised that US lawmakers would work as long as it would be necessary for justice to be done in Khashoggi.
While lawmakers have been pressuring the United States to punish the kingdom, Trump administration officials have claimed that Saudi Arabia serves as a bulwark in the fight against the United States. Iran's aggression threatens the United States.
Khashoggi, 59, entered the consulate on 2 October while his fiancee was waiting outside.
Saudi Arabia denied for weeks that Khashoggi was killed, but then changed his story and finally acknowledged the brutal murder.
The kingdom has indicted 11 people for the murder and announced last week that he would seek the death penalty against five of them.
Khashoggi's body, allegedly dismembered after his murder, has not been found yet.