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Lawsuit Says Saudi Crown Prince Sent “Hit Squad” To Assassinate Ex-Spy In Canada

Saad Aljabri said in the lawsuit that Prince Mohammed sent a “hit squad” to Canada, where Aljabri lives in exile,  to kill and dismember him in the same manner Jamal Khashoggi was murdered. 

Washington| In a US lawsuit Thursday, a former senior Saudi intelligence official Saad Aljabri said that the country’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman tried to have him assassinated in 2018, just weeks after dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi was murdered in Turkey.

Saad Aljabri said that Prince Mohammed sent a “hit squad” to Canada, where Aljabri lives in exile,  to kill and dismember him in the same manner Jamal Khashoggi was murdered allegedly by the prince’s agents in Istanbul in October 2018.

“To fulfil his murderous desire, Defendant bin Salman has personally orchestrated an attempted extrajudicial killing of Dr. Saad, an attempt that remains ongoing to this day,” Aljabri said in a lawsuit filed in federal court in Washington.

Prince Mohammed wants him dead because he is close to rival prince and former Saudi security chief Prince Mohammed bin Nayef, and because he has intimate knowledge of Prince Mohammed’s activities that would sour the close relationship between Washington and Riyadh, Aljabri said in his lawsuit.

“Dr. Saad is uniquely positioned to existentially threaten Defendant bin Salman’s standing with the US government. That is why Defendant bin Salman wants him dead,” suit further added.

When Prince Mohammed seized power in the palace, removing Mohammed bin Nayef as crown prince and placing him under house arrest, Aljabri was already abroad in June 2017.

Aljabri refused entreaties to return after his children in Riyadh were subjected to travel restrictions, fearing he would meet the same fate as Prince Nayef, and moved to Canada where a son lives.

Riyadh, since then, tried unsuccessfully to use Interpol to gain custody of him. He also says that they sent a team of agents to the United States to track him down.

A team from what Aljabri called in the lawsuit Prince Mohammed’s “personal mercenary group, the Tiger Squad,” arrived in Canada thirteen days after Khashoggi’s murder on 2 October 2018.

Aljabri also claimed that the team consisted of forensic specialists and equipment similar to the group that dismembered Khashoggi’s body, which was never recovered.

Stressing that Prince Mohammed obtained a religious fatwa, or command, for his death from clerics, he said that  Canadian security became suspicious and disrupted the plot, but that efforts to kill him continue.

Claiming attempted extrajudicial killing under the Torture Victim Protection Act, the suit has been filed against Prince Mohammed plus 12 named and another 11 unidentified people.

Asking the court to declare that the defendants violated the “law of nations” under the Alien Tort Statute, the suit said, “This court can begin the process of holding defendant bin Salman and his agents accountable for their actions.”

 

 

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