Khashoggi's WashPost editor pushes for answers RS_00023625.jpg
Khashoggi's WashPost editor pushes for answers RS_00023625.jpg
Now playing
04:56
Khashoggi's WashPost editor pushes for answers
minutocnn khashoggi trump 2020 mh17 crisis migratoria marta futbol pkg digital original _00000000.jpg
minutocnn khashoggi trump 2020 mh17 crisis migratoria marta futbol pkg digital original _00000000.jpg
Now playing
02:49
UN official: Saudi Arabia responsible for Khashoggi's murder
jamal khashoggi carrera censura corte real principe mohammed bin salman periodista obituario pkg_00000710.jpg
jamal khashoggi carrera censura corte real principe mohammed bin salman periodista obituario pkg_00000710.jpg
Now playing
04:45
What happened to Jamal Khashoggi?: A timeline (2018)
Now playing
03:52
Khashoggi messages reveal sharp criticism of MBS
AFP/Getty Images
Now playing
02:10
Who does Trump believe in journalist's death?
Future Investment Initative
Now playing
02:01
Saudi Crown Prince comments on Khashoggi
CNNI
Now playing
02:22
Turkish President addresses Khashoggi murder
TRT WORLD
Now playing
05:09
Trump calls out 'deception' in Khashoggi probe
Saudi FM
Fox News
Saudi FM
Now playing
01:55
Saudi FM: Khashoggi death a rogue operation
CNN/Pool
Now playing
02:33
Pompeo: Even Saudi royal family is accountable
Now playing
07:45
Sons of slain Saudi journalist speak to CNN
A general manager of Alarab TV, Jamal Khashoggi, looks on during a press conference in the Bahraini capital Manama, on December 15, 2014. The  pan-Arab satellite news broadcaster owned by billionaire Saudi businessman Alwaleed bin Talal will go on air February 1, promising to "break the mould" in a crowded field.AFP PHOTO/ MOHAMMED AL-SHAIKH        (Photo credit should read MOHAMMED AL-SHAIKH/AFP/Getty Images)
MOHAMMED AL-SHAIKH/AFP/Getty Images
A general manager of Alarab TV, Jamal Khashoggi, looks on during a press conference in the Bahraini capital Manama, on December 15, 2014. The pan-Arab satellite news broadcaster owned by billionaire Saudi businessman Alwaleed bin Talal will go on air February 1, promising to "break the mould" in a crowded field.AFP PHOTO/ MOHAMMED AL-SHAIKH (Photo credit should read MOHAMMED AL-SHAIKH/AFP/Getty Images)
Now playing
00:42
Turkish official: Khashoggi's body was cut into pieces
Missing Saudi Journalist Jamal Khashoggi with his fiance Hatice Cengiz
Hatice Cengiz
Missing Saudi Journalist Jamal Khashoggi with his fiance Hatice Cengiz
Now playing
01:27
Friend: Khashoggi's fiancé asked me to pray
CNN
Now playing
07:42
Jamal Khashoggi's editor speaks out
TRT World
Now playing
00:44
Trump: Saudi King denies knowledge of Khashoggi
(CNN Business) —  

The CEO of French oil giant Total (TOT) says he will attend a controversial business conference in Saudi Arabia this week.

Patrick Pouyanné said Monday that he will go to the Future Investment Initiative in Riyadh, even though many prominent CEOs — including those from JPMorgan (JPM), HSBC (HSBC), Blackrock (BLK) and Uber — have dropped out. The exodus was sparked by the disappearance and death of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

“I am convinced that an ‘empty chairs at the table’ strategy serves no useful purpose, especially when it comes to respect for human rights,” Pouyanné said in a statement.

Pouyanné said that while he respects the decision of some business leaders not to attend, he believes that “boycotts and withdrawing investment only hurt the ordinary people of the country.”

“I was invited to attend this economic forum by Khaled Al-Falih, Saudi Arabia’s Energy Minister, to talk about energy,” he added. “I had told the minister — a very honorable man I have known for a long time — that I would attend, and I wish to fulfill that commitment.”

Earlier this month, Total signed a deal to start working on a $5 billion petrochemical complex in Saudi Arabia with Saudi Aramco, the state oil behemoth. Pouyanné cited that investment as another factor in his decision.

Conference organizers have said it will be business as usual when the conference, known as “Davos in the desert,” starts Tuesday.

Khashoggi was last seen Oct. 2 walking into the Saudi consulate in Istanbul. Saudi Arabia initially denied involvement in his disappearance. But the kingdom now claims the Washington Post columnist died in a fistfight involving more than a dozen Saudi officials.

CNN’s Zahraa Alkhalisi contributed to this report.