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To (properly) assassinate a journalist, Ryad should have consulted

(B2) After carrying out the assassination of Jamal Khashoghi, the Saudis could have asked for help from the Europeans. On this point, several countries have become masters in the art of discarding. An exchange of good practices could thus be judicious and allow Ryad to get out of a bad situation in which it has placed itself.

Three lessons for (good) murder

First lesson: do not assassinate a journalist in an official compound. It is better to choose a road (Malta), the home of the person concerned (Slovakia) or a more or less disreputable public place (Bulgaria). This localization makes it possible to clear customs of any official action, direct or indirect.

Second lesson: do it at home, and not in a consulate, or a diplomatic compound, in a country which is not automatically the best friend in the world, and has rather effective 'intelligence services'. The increase in self-confidence is not good.

Third lesson: start by denying, but very quickly trigger an investigation. Then there are several variations.

The European variants for burying a troublesome affair

The Maltese variant: hanging out

For a year since Daphne Caruana Galicia was murdered, the investigation is stalling. The Maltese government is the champion of the trick. No tangible results were highlighted. " Maltese justice has a real rule of law problem underlines a European diplomat. But the small Mediterranean island is no one's reproach. At least officially. If no one dares publicly pronounce this infamous word, European experts have worked several times on the Maltese file of corruption. Read : The assassination of Daphne: an act of intimidation above all

The Bulgarian method: a simple news item

There the investigation resulted in less than 24 hours to designate an almost perfect culprit, feeding the trail of a bad meeting, and no longer of an assassination linked to the personality of the journalist. Advantage: nobody talks about it anymore. News item = classified.

The Slovak method: investigation, resignation

We are in a more refined situation than Maltese wait-and-see attitude and Bulgarian promptness. The Minister of the Interior, presumed to be at the heart of guilty ramifications, has resigned. The culprits have been identified. But all the channels of the assassination of Jan Kuciak and his companion have not been dismantled. And the state remains very fragile. Read : Ján Kuciak murdered by whom? Why ?

(Nicolas Gros-Verheyde)

Nicolas Gros Verheyde

Chief editor of the B2 site. Graduated in European law from the University of Paris I Pantheon Sorbonne and listener to the 65th session of the IHEDN (Institut des Hautes Etudes de la Défense Nationale. Journalist since 1989, founded B2 - Bruxelles2 in 2008. EU/NATO correspondent in Brussels for Sud-Ouest (previously West-France and France-Soir).

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