A guest at a celebrity Halloween party caused outrage when he arrived dressed as slain Saudi Arabian journalist Jamal Khashoggi. That man has since been identified as 57-year-old ITV boss Asif Zubairy.
Following the outcry of his very poorly timed costume and the reveal of his identity, Zubairy has come forward to apologize for his costume, recognizing that many were seriously offended by the outfit, according to the Daily Mail.
In response to his costume, Zubairy was accused of “appalling taste” and “inexcusable behavior” for the outfit, which he wore to a party thrown by Jonathan Ross on Wednesday night. Just hours before Zubairy’s tasteless appearance, it was revealed the Khashoggi had been strangled and cut up inside his own country’s consulate in Istanbul, Turkey.
Zubairy was seen arriving at the party, which was hosted at Ross’s North London home, wearing what appeared to be a “blood-spattered white coat and a keffiyeh – a Middle Eastern headscarf – while carrying a severed hand.”
While ITV has refused to comment on the incident, Zubairy has issued a statement, although it’s not entirely apologetic and remorseful for his disgusting costume.
“I’m a private individual who attended a private party. I realize my Halloween costume may have offended some people, for which I apologize.”
Does Asif Zubairy, Head of Commissioning for comedy & Entertainment still have a job? Unbelievable crass and stupid behaviour. https://t.co/RtkLSCZz7J
— DavidSloanUK (@DavidSloanUK) November 1, 2018
Sir Alistair Graham, former chairman of the Committee on Standards in Public Life, expressed his horror at the candor.
“I’m shocked such a senior person showed such appalling taste. It’s truly shocking that someone of his experience had such a crass understanding of what was acceptable. ITV must be shocked about the damage to their reputation that such a senior person has behaved in such an inappropriate way.”
Another person who spoke out about Zubairy’s bizarre decision was Democrat foreign affairs spokeswoman Christine Jardine, saying she was “astonished at this appalling lack of sensitivity to a horrific murder which has raised serious questions over Britain’s relationship with Saudi Arabia.”
The death of Khashoggi has sparked international outrage at the Saudi regime. The Washington Post columnist was a prominent Saudi critic, and had entered the consulate to obtain papers he needed to marry his fiancee. Just this week, it emerged that he had been strangled the moment he had arrived inside the building, and, according to Turkish prosecutors, was then dismembered and his body soaked in acid. A 15-man team of assassins had been flown into the country specifically for the task of murdering Khashoggi.