'Jamal Khashoggi Way': Los Angeles votes to rename Saudi consulate street
The Los Angeles City Council voted to rename the street outside the Saudi consulate as “Jamal Khashoggi Way”.
The vote took place on Thursday 25 May to honour the slain journalist. Jamal Khashoggi, a critic of Saudi Arabia and columnist for the Washington Post and Middle East Eye, was killed by Saudi agents on 2 October 2018 after entering the kingdom's embassy in Istanbul.
It was an assassination that American intelligence services believe was approved by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, though he denies this.
The road set to be named in his honour runs right in front of the Saudi Arabian consulate on Wilshire Boulevard and is a “testament to our collective commitment to freedom of expression and accountability for Khashoggi's murder by Saudi Crown Prince Mohamed bin Salman," Raed Jarrar, the advocacy director at Democracy for the Arab World Now (Dawn), said.
"As we honour Jamal's legacy, we also send a strong message that even as some rush to pander to the Saudi government for a few coins, we will continue to fight for justice and accountability for all those responsible for his murder."
A public ceremony to officially designate the street will be held later in the year.
"Renaming the street that overlooks the Saudi Consulate underscores our city's admiration for Jamal Khashoggi's legacy while simultaneously reaffirming our unwavering commitment to uphold our fundamental principles," Los Angeles councilwoman, Traci Park, who is one of the bill's co-sponsors, said.
Last year, the street outside the Saudi Arabian embassy in Washington DC was renamed “Jamal Khashoggi Way”.
More than 100 people gathered in front of the embassy for the ceremony last June, as they held aloft photos of the slain journalist while security guards staffed the entrance to the building.
The campaign to rename the Washington DC street began soon after Khashoggi was killed, with activists delivering a 10,000-signature petition to the local Advisory Neighborhood Commission.
Last year, a Turkish court closed the case into the killing of Khashoggi, citing a set of legal reasons, according to documents seen by MEE. Saudi judicial authorities had said many of the suspects had already been tried in the kingdom.
This article is available in French on Middle East Eye French edition.