Published: Wed, November 28, 2018
Global Media | By Jackie Banks

Saudi crown prince visits Tunisia amid Khashoggi protests

Saudi crown prince visits Tunisia amid Khashoggi protests

He has travelled to the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt in recent days, and was expected Tuesday in Tunisia - where unions and human rights organizations have called for protests against his visit.

The welcome from the Egyptian leadership and President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi was evidence of Cairo's continued support of the stability of Riyadh.

USA media reported earlier that the briefing would also focus on the Saudi role in the death of Khashoggi, and whether to impose further sanctions on the kingdom.

"The submission also highlights his possible complicity in serious allegations of torture and other ill treatment of Saudi citizens, including the murder of the journalist Jamal Khashoggi", the rights group said in a statement.

The Saudi Crown Prince's diplomatic tour will also include Tunisia and Mauritania.

The group said that by allowing and welcoming bin Salman's presence at the summit, state leaders would be sending a "negative message" to the free world.

"But even a small risk of a messy dispute in the Argentinian courts could overshadow a trip previously seen as a chance for the prince to show he remained welcome among world leaders even after the conclusion of USA intelligence agencies that he had authorized the killing of Khashoggi", the Herald added, noting that MBS' post-Khashoggi charm offensive has been going fairly well thus far.

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Asked about the prince's visit, Tunisian government minister Selma Elloumi said he is "welcome" in Tunisia and stressed "historical and fraternal" relations between the countries.

Hilal Khashan, a political science professor at American University of Beirut, said the Saudi crown prince's visit to the region was aimed at telling his domestic audience that he was given a strong welcome by the kingdom's Arab allies.

"He is coming to this country to dirty it, and acquire a false legitimacy", Tahar Yahya, of the Tunisian Order of Lawyers said Monday night. The banner reads, "No to the desecration of Tunisia".

Khashoggi's murder has strained Saudi Arabia's ties with the West and affected its image overseas.

"A decision by Argentine officials to move toward investigation would be a strong signal that even powerful officials like Mohammed bin Salman are not beyond the reach of the law".

In its petition, HRW highlighted almost 90 "indiscriminate and disproportionate airstrikes on civilians" in which the USA -backed Saudi coalition has "hit homes, markets, hospitals, schools and mosques" across Yemen.

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