17:38 GMT15 June 2021
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    Former UK foreign secretary Boris Johnson accepted a fully-paid trip to Saudi Arabia valued at £14,000 ($18,027) mere days before Saudi critic Jamal Khashoggi was murdered, new records show.

    register of MPs' financial interests prepared on Wednesday revealed that Mr. Johnson flew to Jeddah from 19 to 21 September, with the Saudi government footing the bill.  

    Johnson has yet to reveal who paid for the trip, despite writing a lengthy Telegraph column condemning Khashoggi's murder last week. 

    Khashoggi, known for his criticism of Saudi policies, had been working as a columnist for The Washington Post. The journalist was last seen entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 2. On October 19, Saudi Arabia admitted the journalist had died during a fight inside the consulate. Riyadh said 18 people had been arrested over their suspected involvement in the incident.

    "There can be no suggestion of a stitch-up, or of denying justice to Mr Khashoggi and his family out of deference to Saudi sensibilities," Mr. Johnson said in his column.  

    He added that UK authorities "should prepare to sanction those involved in carrying out or authorising the brutal killing of this journalist, not least since journalists are now being killed around the world at an unprecedented rate." 

    However, Mr. Johnson has been an avid supporter of Saudi ruler Mohammad bin Salman and lauded his achievements in a Telegraph column in February, calling the crown prince a "reformer" and praising his "social and economic renewal of Saudi Arabia" via the Vision 2030 program.

    A close source to the Uxbridge MP told the Sun that Mr. Johnson had "visited Saudi Arabia to discuss his long-standing campaign of improving education for women and girls". 

    READ MORE: Saudi Prosecutor Refuses to tell Turkey Location of Khashoggi’s Body – Reports

    The register also disclosed a £50,000 donation that Mr. Johnson received from contentious hedge-fund founder Jon Wood, which he used to pay office and staffing expenses. 

    Of course, Twitter had plenty to say about the revelations, with both BoJo critics and enthusiasts alike commenting on his recent getaway to the Saudi coast. 


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    embassy, murder, assassination, report, Kashoggi murder, UK Parliament, Jamal Khashoggi, Mohammad bin Salman Al Saud, Boris Johnson, United Kingdom, Saudi Arabia
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