Four members of the Saudi intervention team, which brutally murdered journalist Jamal Hashukji in 2018, underwent paramilitary training in the United States. The relevant contract with the terms of the training was approved by the US State Department, the New York Times (NYT) reported on Wednesday night.
In the archival image, Saudi journalist Jamal Hashukji
Khasukji, a US-born resident of Saudi Arabia, was a well-known and outspoken critic of the Saudi leadership and wrote regularly for the Washington Post. He was assassinated on October 2, 2018 at the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul by a team of agents sent from Saudi Arabia.
Four of these agents – according to the New York Times – received training in the private US security service Tier 1 Group, which in 2014 was approved by the administration of President Barack Obama.
The training continued at least until the beginning of Donald Trump’s presidency, the newspaper said.
The newspaper quoted a document provided to the Trump administration by a representative of the parent company Tier 1 Group, who applied for a position at the Pentagon.
Louis Bremer confirmed in his written testimony that the Tier 1 Group had provided training to Saudi Arabian agents, but insisted that the training focused on defense, including safe shooting and rapid response to attack, tracking practice and close combat, and “was not related to their subsequent abominable acts’.
Bremer said that four members of the murder team completed training in 2017 and two of them took part in a previous course from October 2014 to January 2015.
The NYT article states that the training took place at a time when the elite commando responsible for Hashukji’s death had begun a raid involving the abduction, arrest and torture of people unfit for the Saudi regime.
According to the newspaper, “there is no evidence that American officials who approved the training or the management of the Tier 1 Group were aware of the participation of these Saudi Arabians in the repression in the kingdom.
The US State Department, which contacted AFP, said it could not comment on the information. However, it called for “responsible use” of US military equipment and training.
According to a US report released in February, seven members of an elite unit tasked with protecting Saudi Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman were part of the intervention unit that killed Khashuku.
The New York Times did not specify whether the unit included four operatives trained in the United States.
The journalist’s body was never found. Saudi Arabia initially flatly denied that it was an assassination in which it was involved, but later claimed that the murder was carried out by Saudi agents who acted on their own.
After a confusing trial in Saudi Arabia, five Saudi Arabians were sentenced to death and three were sentenced to prison. Death sentences were later changed.
Source: Pravda.sk – Správy by spravy.pravda.sk.
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