Argentina’s judicial authorities have begun to probe a submission concerning the role of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman in connection with alleged war crimes by the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen and torture by Saudi officials, Human Rights Watch said today.
The Saudi crown prince is expected to attend the G20 Summit in Buenos Aires on November 30, 2018.
On Monday, Human Rights Watch filed a submission with an Argentine federal prosecutor outlining its public findings on alleged violations of international law committed during the armed conflict in Yemen for which Mohammed bin Salman may face criminal liability as Saudi Arabia’s defense minister.
The submission also highlights his role in serious allegations of torture and other ill-treatment of Saudi citizens, including the murder of the journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
“Argentine prosecutorial authorities should scrutinize Mohammed bin Salman’s role in possible war crimes committed by the Saudi-led coalition since 2015 in Yemen,” said Kenneth Roth, the executive director of Human Rights Watch. “The crown prince’s attendance at the G20 Summit in Buenos Aires could make the Argentine courts an avenue of redress for victims of abuses unable to seek justice in Yemen or Saudi Arabia.”
Argentina’s constitution recognizes universal jurisdiction for war crimes and torture which means that judicial authorities in the country are empowered to investigate and prosecute these crimes no matter where they were committed, and regardless of the nationality of the suspects or their victims.