Minister Bone Saw

A protest outside the Saudi Embassy in London called for all those responsible for the horrific murder and dismembering of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, including Saudi crown prince Mohammed bin Salman who is thought to have approved sending the death squad to the consulate in the Turkish city of Istanbul, to be brought to justice.

The Committee to Protect Journalists website lists the name of 53 journalists killed in 2018, including Khashoggi,  one of the 34 murdered. Others were killed by crossfire (11) or on dangerous assignments (8).  Twelve of them were photographers, half killed by crossfire. Seven other media workers were also killed.

Few of these deaths made the UK news, because most were local photographers, working in their own countries, and there were no deaths in the UK. Kashoggi’s death made the news partly because he was a journalist for a major US newspaper, but also because of its horrific nature, dismembered while still living using a bone saw and his body in parts smuggled out of the Saudi consulate. I read about the recording apparently transmitted from his watch during his killing, but could not bear to click the link to listen to it.

Few if any believe the Saudi denial that his killing was approved by Saudi crown prince Mohammed bin Salman, generally known as MBS, which placards expanded to Minister Bone Saw.  It’s perhaps something of a mystery why MBS thought he could get away with it – though the rich often do, and while there was international revulsion there has been little or no real action. Also hard to understand is why Kashoggi believed the assurances he was apparently given about his safety.

Here in the UK, journalists are generally fairly safe, though a few of my colleagues have suffered at the hands of police, with teeth being knocked out and arms broken, normally the worst we get are a few bruises.  The only UK death on the CPJ site, which has records since 1992, was of Martin O’Hagan, a 51-year-old investigative journalist for the Dublin Sunday World, shot dead outside his home in September 2001 in Lurgan, Northern Ireland.

The protest outside the embassy was also against the Saudi involvement in the war in Yemen and called for the UK to immediately stop arms sales to Saudi Arabia.

Justice For Jamal Khashoggi & Yemen


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