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‘Seriously misguided’: Amnesty angry at Greg Norman’s comments on Khashoggi | Sports

Amnesty International has criticized Greg Norman for making “false and seriously misguided” comments about the 2018 murder of Jamal Khashoggi in a Saudi Arabian consulate and the high number of executions by the kingdom that year.

Norman, the chief executive of Saudi Arabia-backed LIV Golf Investments, was asked about Khashoggi’s death while promoting an upcoming tournament in the UK. Last year, US intelligence services concluded that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman authorized Khashoggi’s murder. The LIV Golf Series begins in Hertfordshire in June.

Norman had said, “This whole thing with Saudi Arabia and Khashoggi and human rights; talk about it, but also talk about the good that the country is doing by changing its culture. Look, we all made mistakes and you just want to learn from those mistakes and how to correct them in the future.

Asked about the execution of 81 men in Saudi Arabia in March, Norman added: “I’ve had a lot of news but honestly I’m looking forward to it. I don’t look back I don’t look into the politics of things. I will not get bogged down in what else is happening in someone else’s world. I heard about it and just kept going.”

Felix Jakens, Amnesty UK’s Campaigns Manager, told the Guardian: “Greg Norman’s claims that the Saudi government’s brutal murder of Khashoggi and its attempted cover-up was a ‘mistake’, false and seriously misguided. Far from “moving on,” the Saudi authorities have sought to sweep their crimes under the rug, evading justice and accountability at every turn.

“The regime’s human rights record is an abomination – from the assassination of Khashoggi to the recent mass executions and the continuing dire situation of LGBTI+ people.

“The LIV Golf Invitational Series is another event in a series of sports washing exercises that the Saudi authorities are using to cleanse their blood-soaked image. Anyone involved in any of the sporting events held there or sponsored by Saudi Arabia needs to know what is going on in the Kingdom and speak out about the government’s brazen abuses.”

Phil Mickelson, Lee Westwood, Sergio García and Ian Poulter are among those set to perform at next month’s LIV tournament at the Centurion Club in Hertfordshire. Norman’s breakaway tour plans have met with strong opposition from the existing golf ecosystem.

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