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MEA awaits Saudi Embassy’s response

saudi diplomat rape case

Saudi Embassy here has not responded to the Ministry of External Affairs’ demand to cooperate in the case involving a Saudi diplomat charged with rape of two Nepalese women, amid speculation that Saudi government may withdraw the accused from India.

A day after India had asked Saudi Arabia to waive the official’s diplomatic immunity and cooperate in the investigation, official sources said, “a response is awaited to what we conveyed to them yesterday”.

Yesterday, Saudi Arabian Ambassador Saud Mohammed Alsati was called to the MEA and told that the accused diplomat should give a statement to the Gurgaon police probing the case.

“MEA Chief of Protocol called in Saudi Ambassador and conveyed request of Haryana Police for cooperation of Embassy in the case of two Nepali citizens,” Spokesperson in the Ministry of External Affairs Vikas Swarup had said.

It is learnt that the diplomat along with his family has shifted to the Saudi Embassy. The two Nepalese women have already gone back to their country yesterday.

The envoy was called a day after MEA had received a “detailed report” about the case from Gurgaon Police including the second medical report confirming rape and sodomy.

Asked whether Saudi Arabia has invoked diplomatic immunity of the diplomat, accused of confining and raping the women at his house in Gurgaon, to enable him escape prosecution, the sources said India has not been informed about any such move.

The options before Saudi Arabia are to either withdraw the diplomat or waive his diplomatic immunity to enable prosecution proceedings. The latter being very unlikely.

India can declare him persona non grata if he does not cooperate with the investigation.

The Saudi Embassy has termed the allegations as “false” and said it has protested police “intrusion” into a diplomat’s house against “all diplomatic conventions”.

The two Nepalese women have alleged that they were confined and raped by the diplomat and his “guests” repeatedly in a flat in Gurgaon on the outskirts of the national capital after which the local police filed an FIR in the matter.