A U.S. federal judge on Tuesday dismissed a lawsuit against Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in the killing of U.S.-based journalist Jamal Khashoggi, bowing to the Biden administration’s insistence that the prince was legally immune in the case.
District of Columbia U.S. District Judge John D. Bates heeded the U.S. government’s motion to shield Prince Mohammed from the lawsuit despite what Bates called “credible allegations of his involvement in Khashoggi’s murder.”
A team of Saudi officials killed Khashoggi inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul in 2018. Khashoggi, a columnist for The Washington Post, had written critically of the harsh ways of Prince Mohammed, Saudi Arabia’s de facto ruler.
The U.S. intelligence community concluded the Saudi crown prince ordered the operation against Khashoggi. The killing opened a rift between the Biden administration and Saudi Arabia that the administration has tried in recent months to close, as the U.S. unsuccessfully urged the kingdom to undo oil production cuts in a global market racked by the Ukraine war.