Human rights activists launched a guerrilla protest on Friday to mark the second anniversary of the assassination of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi, projecting the slain Saudi's image on the Saudi Arabian Embassy and other prominent buildings in Washington, D.C. and other cities.
Freedom First, a campaign in partnership with Amnesty International and the Freedom Initiative, said Friday's demonstration was meant "to draw attention to the individuals unfairly detained, prosecuted, and tortured under the leadership of Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman."
Last night, our campaign projected Jamal Khashoggi’s image on the @SaudiEmbassyUSA as a reminder that we have not forgotten.
— Freedom First (@freedomfirst) October 2, 2020
In addition to the nation's capital, activists projected Khashoggi's image on buildings and landmarks in cities including New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Miami.
"Even when the lights go out and the cameras turn to the next big story, we'll still be here, working tirelessly to get justice for our friend, Jamal," said Mohamed Soltan from the Freedom Initiative in a statement. "[We'll] make sure that the horrendous crime of his assassination doesn't pass with impunity."
Others took to social media to remember the murdered journalist:
Two years ago today, journalist Jamal Khashoggi was murdered at the Saudi crown prince's direction. He deserves justice.
Democracy activists face enormous challenges in Saudi Arabia and across the region. We honor him by defending their rights and supporting their work.
— Bernie Sanders (@SenSanders) October 2, 2020
Two years ago today, Jamal Khashoggi was murdered in a Saudi Consulate in Istanbul.
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It's still not easy for me to write about Jamal, but I had some thoughts about how the fight for justice is being taken to U.S. courts. https://t.co/CqZk1fmNDL
— Karen Attiah (@KarenAttiah) October 2, 2020
Philippe Nassif from Amnesty International USA vowed that "on the anniversary of your assassination, we promise you, Jamal, to always tell your story and to fight tirelessly until justice and truth are served. Rest in peace."
Along with the projections, the activists urged people to take the Freedom Pledge, "vowing their dedication to spread awareness of universal human rights and to challenge governments who silence the truth."
Jamal Khashoggi was murdered 2 years ago because he believed in the freedom of expression. We honor his legacy by expressing those same freedoms. Honor him and take the Freedom Pledge at https://t.co/8CYNMzk5LG. #FreedomFirst pic.twitter.com/B5Z3Kh22YM
— Mark Ruffalo (@MarkRuffalo) October 2, 2020
Today, two years on, in front of #SaudiArabia’s Embassy in Oslo we keep demanding justice for the murdered Saudi journalist #Jamal_Khashoggi. #MBS, please respect the right to life and freedom of expression of all Saudi citizen! @ksaembassyosl pic.twitter.com/l5qNDf59S2
— Amnesty Norge (@Amnesty_Norge) October 2, 2020
The CIA and other intelligence and government agencies around the world concluded that bin Salman personally ordered Saudi agents to kidnap, assassinate, and dismember Khashoggi at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, Turkey, on October 2, 2018. Despite this, and despite having one of the world's worst overall human rights records, the U.S. remains a steadfast ally of the theocratic monarchy that rules Saudi Arabia with an iron fist.
Last year, President Donald Trump vetoed a bipartisan bill passed by Congress that would have ended U.S. support for the Saudi-led war in Yemen. More recently, the administration drew bipartisan pushback for its plan to sell more than $8 billion worth of American arms to Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and Jordan.
“I saved his ass,” bragged Trump, referring to his Saudi sweetie MBS after Jamal Khashoggi’s assassination. Trump and MBS surely will take pride in big billboards like these going up all over America. Here’s one on the side of a San Francisco building. @freedomfirst @thefreedomi pic.twitter.com/2gsRmuGBL8
— Eason Jordan (@EasonJordan) October 1, 2020