Germany bans 18 Khashoggi suspects from European travel

Patrick Donahue and Birgit Jennen
Bloomberg News

Germany said 18 Saudi citizens suspected in the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi have been banned from entering Europe’s passport-free travel area.

Coordinated with France and the U.K., the notice applies to the European Union’s so-called Schengen area, German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said in Brussels. The list includes Saud al-Qahtani, a senior adviser to Saudi Arabian Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, and a 15-member team suspected of carrying out the murder, a Foreign Ministry official said.

“There are more questions than answers in the clarification of this case, both regarding the act itself and who is behind it,” Maas told reporters on Monday. EU member states will consider additional measures, he said.

Khashoggi was killed shortly after Germany and Saudi Arabia ended a diplomatic rift that lasted almost a year and put at risk trade between the two nations. After the killing, Germany suspended previously licensed weapons exports to Saudi Arabia.

The U.S. Central Intelligence Agency has concluded that Prince Mohammed ordered last month’s killing in Istanbul, according to several news organizations including the Washington Post and the New York Times. That would contradict claims by the government in Riyadh that the Saudi crown prince wasn’t involved.

President Donald Trump said Prince Mohammed has denied to him perhaps five times that he had a role in Khashoggi’s murder – and that the U.S. government may never know.