Framing a murder: Twitter influencers and the Jamal Khashoggi incident

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Social media have played a significant role in political discourse across the Mediterranean in recent years. In this research note, we showcase the usefulness of social media data for political analysis by focusing on the main Arabic Twitter hashtag following the assassination of Jamal Khashoggi in Istanbul, October 2018. We collect a sample of almost 2.4 million tweets posted by nearly 370,000 Twitter accounts. We show that just 281 accounts drove 80% of the discourse, and that these accounts can be reliably clustered into separate ideological camps representing different social forces of Egyptian, Turkish, European, and Gulf origin, arrayed against or in support of Saudi Arabia’s regional agenda.




Abrahams, A., & Leber, A. (2021). Framing a murder: Twitter influencers and the Jamal Khashoggi incident. Mediterranean Politics, 26(2), 247–259.

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