20:05 GMT +326 March 2019
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    People hold signs during a protest at the Embassy of Saudi Arabia about the disappearance of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, Wednesday, Oct. 10, 2018, in Washington.

    France Imposes Travel Bans on 18 Saudis Over Khashoggi Killing

    © AP Photo/ Jacquelyn Martin
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    Germany imposed similar sanctions earlier this week, as German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said that Germany had banned 18 Saudi citizens, suspected of being involved in the murder of Khashoggi, from entering the country, with Berlin also exerting pressure on arms exporters to make them halt weapon deliveries to Riyadh.

    Paris has announced that it imposed imposed sanctions, including travel bans, on 18 Saudi citizens allegedly linked to Khashoggi murder, and that further punitive measures may be enacted in the future, depending on results of the ongoing investigation.

    "The murder of Mr Khashoggi is a crime of extreme gravity, which moreover goes against freedom of the press and the most fundamental rights," French foreign ministry said in a statement. "France asks that all light be shed on the manner in which such an act may have been committed. It expects from the Saudi authorities a transparent, detailed and exhaustive response."

    While the identities of the sanctioned individuals are not revealed, the Saudi authorities previously announced that 18 suspects had been arrested as part of the ongoing probe, with Turkey conducting a separate investigation, alleging that Khashoggi was killed by a 15-member hit squad sent from Saudi Arabia the day before he went missing.

    Earlier this week, German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said that Germany had banned 18 Saudi citizens, suspected of being involved in the murder of Khashoggi, from entering the country. The German Ministry of Economy and Energy, in turn, said that Berlin was exerting pressure on arms exporters to make them halt arms deliveries to the kingdom, which has already resulted in the end of the weapons exports to Riyadh.

    READ MORE: Saudi FM Slams Reports of Possible Regime Change Amid Khashoggi Case

    On Tuesday, Reuters reported that anonymous sources close to the royal court some members of the Saudi Royal Family have been campaigning against Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman becoming the next king.

    Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir however called reports about a possible coup in a bid to change the royal line of succession "ridiculous" and "way out of line."


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    travel ban, sanctions, Jamal Khashoggi, Saudi Arabia, France
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