Without the remains of the slain Jamal Khashoggi, family and friends offered symbolic funeral prayers in Saudi Arabia and Turkey on Friday for the repose of the soul of the late Saudi journalist.
Also, thousands of worshippers at Mecca’s Grand Mosque and the Prophet’s Mosque in Medina, Khashoggi’s hometown, joined in prayers for the deceased, though the imams did not mention his name.
For weeks, Khashoggi’s family urged Saudi and Turkish authorities to find his remains and hand them over for burial, but the Saudi prosecutor said the whereabouts of the journalist, killed by agents of his own government, were unknown.
The case sparked global outcry and mired the kingdom in crisis.
Reuters correspondent, Huseyin Aldemir, reported that people attended the symbolic funeral prayer for Khashoggi at the courtyard of Fatih Mosque in Istanbul on November 16.
Mourners raised their hands in prayer outside Fatih Mosque as imam recited Qur’anic verses under a tent set up to protect them against rain, and Khashoggi’s friends eulogized him.
“What we heard yesterday from the Saudi public prosecutor is not the justice we were expecting or waiting for, but represents injustice itself,” said Ayman Nour, a liberal Egyptian politician.
Yasin Aktay, adviser to Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan called on Saudi Prince Mohammed to distance himself from the legal proceedings, saying “there is no chance to have a court proceeding that is independent from the crown prince in Saudi Arabia.”
Islamic tradition places immense importance on proper handling of the dead, mandating quick burial.
The revelation that the body was dismembered had thus been particularly disturbing.
The decision to hold prayer services in the absence of a body suggests that the family does not expect it to be recovered.