Human Rights Watch denounces the Saudi Crown Prince in Argentina


International NGO Human Rights Watch on Monday filed a complaint against the Saudi Crown Prince, Mohammed bin Salman , who will visit Buenos Aires later this week for the G20 leaders' summit.

HRW reported on its website that the complaint was filed Monday with an Argentine federal prosecutor, who was asked to investigate the Saudi prince for alleged violations of international law committed during the armed conflict in Yemen.

According to HRW, Bin Salman "may face criminal liability" for those violations as Saudi Arabia's defense minister.

"Argentine prosecutorial authorities should scrutinize Mohammed bin Salman's role in possible war crimes committed by the Saudi-led coalition since 2015 in Yemen," said Kenneth Roth, executive director of Human Rights Watch.

The brief also refers to the possible complicity of the Crown Prince in serious allegations of torture and other ill-treatment of Saudi citizens, including the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi , perpetrated in early October at the Saudi Embassy in Turkey.

Saudi Arabia already confirmed a week ago that Bin Salman, whom the US Intelligence Agency (CIA) considers the probable instigator of Khashoggi's assassination in Istanbul, will attend the G20 leaders' summit, which will be held on Nov. 30 and Dec. 1 in Buenos Aires.

"The crown prince's attendance at the G20 Summit in Buenos Aires could make the Argentine courts an avenue of redress for victims of abuses unable to seek justice in Yemen or Saudi Arabia," Roth said.

The humanitarian organization recalled that the Argentine Constitution recognizes universal jurisdiction for war crimes and torture, which implies that the country's judicial authorities are authorized to investigate and prosecute these crimes, regardless of the place in which they were committed and the nationality of the perpetrators or the victims.

"A decision by Argentine officials to move toward investigation would be a strong signal that even powerful officials like Mohammed bin Salman are not beyond the reach of the law, and Mohammed bin Salman should know that he may face a criminal probe if he ventures to Argentina," Roth said.

The submission filed with the prosecutor Ramiro Gonzalez went to the Argentine federal court led by Judge Ariel Lijo.

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