April 10, 2019 / 12:49 PM / 15 days ago

Khashoggi's children deny considering settlement over murder

FILE PHOTO: A demonstrator holds a poster with a picture of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi outside the Saudi Arabia consulate in Istanbul, Turkey October 25, 2018. REUTERS/Osman Orsal/File Photo

RIYADH (Reuters) - The children of murdered Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi denied on Wednesday discussing any sort of settlement over his killing by Saudi agents after a report of compensation awards.

“Currently the trial is taking place and no settlement has been discussed or is being discussed,” said the statement, published on Twitter by Khashoggi’s elder son Salah.

The Washington Post, where Khashoggi was a columnist, reported last week his children were given million-dollar houses and monthly five-figure payments as compensation

But it said that was separate from any potential “blood money” payment that could be negotiated after the murder trial under the Saudi justice system.

While ruling out a “settlement,” the family statement did not, however, explicitly deny receiving compensation. In fact it added: “Acts of wisdom and generosity arise from high morals and humanity and are not an admission of guilt or error. We were raised to be grateful for favors and not reject them.”

Family members could not be immediately reached for further comment.

Eleven suspects are on trial for last year’s murder, which the CIA and some Western governments believe was ordered by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. The authorities deny he had any role in or knowledge of the killing, which sparked an international outcry and limited sanctions by Western allies.

Reuters reported last month that a royal adviser fired and sanctioned by Washington over the murder is not among those on trial at secretive hearings in Riyadh.

Reporting By Stephen Kalin and Tuqa Khalid; Editing by Angus MacSwan and Andrew Cawthorne

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