U.S. President Joe Biden has promised to bring up human rights concerns when he meets with Saudi leaders in Jeddah on Friday as part of his first Middle Eastern trip, but the visit has been surrounded by considerable intrigue and controversy.
For the families of those who killed in a mass execution earlier this year, which saw 81 people executed on March 12 in what human rights groups condemned as a “massacre,” the trip is seen as nothing less than legitimizing the Kingdom’s regime.
Yasser al-Khayat, the brother of Mustafa al-Khayat who was executed in March for alleged “terrorist” activities, told ABC News that the family have still not received his body for a proper burial. According to the European Saudi Organization for Human Rights, Mustafa was tortured into signing a confession having been held in solitary confinement for six months.
“We are still mourning,” he said in a statement shared with ABC News. “This visit legitimizes Mohammed bin Salman’s actions, sending the message that my brother’s life doesn’t matter and that America will continue to support the regime no matter how many of us they kill.”
Read the full story at ABC News.