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Saudi Arabia

From The Washington Post: Sunday, November 23, 2003; Page A22
Bank Data For Saudi Embassy Subpoenaed
FBI Investigating Riyadh's Spending for Terrorist Ties
By Douglas Farah, Washington Post Staff Writer
The FBI, in an unprecedented move that has strained relations with a close ally in the war on terrorism, has subpoenaed records for dozens of bank accounts belonging to the Saudi Embassy, part of an investigation into whether any of the hundreds of millions of dollars Riyadh spends in the United States each year end up in the hands of Muslim extremists, U.S. and Saudi officials said. ...

From Asia Times: Nov 26, 2003
US senators seek Saudi sanctions By Emad Mekay
WASHINGTON - After targeting both Syria and Palestinian President Yasser Arafat, some pro-Israel United States senators have tabled a bill in Congress that would impose sanctions on Saudi Arabia for its alleged ties to international terrorism. ...

From AFP: Mon Jan 12, 6:09 AM ET
Saudi Arabia hits back at Perle's "axis of evil" jibe
RIYADH (AFP) - Saudi Arabia angrily rejected a "tendentious" campaign led by US hawks after an advisor to Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld lumped the kingdom in the "axis of evil". State-monitored media led the charge warning that Washington's own interests were being damaged. Rumsfeld aide Richard Perle told CNN on Sunday: "The Saudis qualify for their own membership in the axis of evil," which President George W. Bush described as Iran, Saddam Hussein's Iraq and North Korea. "I hope that those who believe that we are now getting full cooperation are right," he added, referring to Saudi Arabia's role in the war on terror following the September 11, 2001 attacks on the United States. "I have yet to see the evidence," Perle charged in the latest assault on the kingdom by influential US neo-conservatives. ...
The Okaz newspaper set the tone of the riposte in the media, which generally reflects official Saudi thinking. "The hawks stubbornly follow the same political line they laid out for this administration to impose their hegemony over the world and not to lead it," it said. "While the whole world refuses war as a means of settling conflict ... Washington is alone against the tide, losing friends and making enemies," the daily said. Okaz warned that "by tolerating campaigns directed against its strategic interest, the (Bush) administration is acting against American interests." The United States imported 13.46 percent of its oil from Saudi Arabia in 2002, the paper noted. ...

From Reuters: Thu January 29, 2004 04:18 PM ET
U.S. Concerned by Extremists in Pakistan, Saudi By Will Dunham
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States must confront broader strategic problems posed by Islamic extremists in Pakistan and Saudi Arabia in addition to stabilizing Iraq and Afghanistan, the head of the U.S. military's Central Command said on Thursday. "Both Pakistan and Saudi Arabia are involved in their own fight against extremists that is crucial to the ability of their nations to maintain control of the internal situation," Gen. John Abizaid, commander of U.S. forces in the region, told reporters. Abizaid said the two "most immediate problems" in what U.S. officials call the global war on terrorism are bringing stability to Iraq and Afghanistan. "I'd also tell you that two broader strategic problems that we have to deal with, that must be dealt with in a broad range, happen to be Pakistan and Saudi Arabia," Abizaid added. ...

From The Daily Times (Pak): Friday, March 19, 2004
Syria, Saudi Arabia reject ‘imposed’ reform initiatives
RIYADH: Coordinating positions ahead of an Arab summit, Saudi Arabia and Syria on Wednesday repeated their objections to an American initiative for reform in the Middle East. President Bashar Assad and Crown Prince Abdullah reiterated their stances that reforms should not be “imposed” from abroad, officials close to the talks said on condition on anonymity. ...

At Newsweek: April 7, 2004
Tangled Ties
Law-enforcement officials follow the money trail among suspected terrorists straight to the doors of the Saudi Embassy
Within weeks of the September 11 terror attacks, security officers at the Fleet National Bank in Boston had identified “suspicious” wire transfers from the Saudi Embassy in Washington that eventually led to the discovery of an active Al Qaeda “sleeper cell” that may have been planning follow-up attacks inside the United States, according to documents obtained by NEWSWEEK. ...

From AP at IWon: Apr 24, 1:42 PM (ET)
Saudis Said to Aid Iraq War Extensively By JOHN SOLOMON
WASHINGTON (AP) - During the Iraq war, Saudi Arabia secretly helped the United States far more than has been acknowledged, allowing operations from at least three air bases, permitting special forces to stage attacks from Saudi soil and providing cheap fuel, U.S. and Saudi officials say. The American air campaign against Iraq was essentially managed from inside Saudi borders, where military commanders operated an air command center and launched refueling tankers, F-16 fighter jets, and sophisticated intelligence gathering flights, according to the officials. ...

From AP at My Way News: May 24, 3:28 PM (ET)
Saudi: U.S. Fighting 'Colonial War'
DUBLIN, Ireland (AP) - The United States is fighting an old-fashioned "colonial war" in Iraq that is fueled by its desire for Iraqi oil, the Saudi ambassador to Britain and Ireland was quoted as saying. In an interview published Monday in the Irish Independent newspaper, Prince Turki al-Faisal likened the U.S.-led invasion and occupation of Iraq to centuries of incursions by the West into the Middle East. ...

From Reuters: Sat May 29, 2004 02:32 PM ET
Qaeda Militants Kill 16, Hold 50 Hostage in Saudi By Samia Nakhoul
KHOBAR, Saudi Arabia (Reuters) - Suspected al Qaeda militants killed at least 16 people, including Westerners, and seized 50 foreigners as hostages on Saturday in an attack on the world's biggest oil exporter. Saudi forces stormed the Oasis housing compound, where the hostages were being held, in the eastern city of Khobar after the militants killed at least nine Saudis and seven foreigners. ... The attack is the second in at least a month to target the vital oil industry and the Westerners who form a large part of its workforce. Oil markets have been on edge over the possibility of a militant strike that would disrupt supplies. ... A statement purportedly from Saudi-born Osama bin Laden's al Qaeda network was posted on Islamist Internet sites claiming responsibility for the attack, the third on foreigners in less than a month in the birthplace of Islam. ... The attack occurred two days after the top al Qaeda leader in the kingdom, Abdulaziz al-Muqrin, issued plans for urban guerrilla warfare designed to topple the royal family. Earlier this month militants killed five foreigners in an attack on a petrochemical site in the Red Sea town of Yanbu and dragged the body of an American through the streets. ...

From Aljazeera: Monday 31 May 2004, 2:35 Makka Time, 23:35 GMT
Bloody end to Saudi hostage crisis
Saudi forces have rescued dozens of hostages after an attack on a compound and a dramatic standoff that left at least 22 people dead. ... Three of the four armed men escaped, holding hostages at gunpoint for cover, but their leader was captured, a government statement said. ...
From Times Online: May 31, 2004
Saudi security forces 'allowed kidnappers to flee'
Saudi security forces allowed some kidnappers in the bloody weekend attack on a residential compound to flee because they threatened to blow up the building, according to reports. ... A Saudi security official, speaking to the Associated Press, would not directly address whether the militants were allowed to escape. But he said: "Our main priority was the hostages, and those guys who ran away, we know how to find them." ...

From AFP at Australian Broadcasting Corp.: Sunday, June 13, 2004. 6:52pm (AEST)
Al-Jazeera airs American's execution
Qatar's Al-Jazeera television station has aired video footage of what it says is the murder of US national Robert Jacob in the Saudi capital, Riyadh, by suspected Al Qaeda killers. ... Mr Jacob, 44, worked for the US Vinnell Corp, which helps train the Saudi National Guard. He was shot dead at his home in Riyadh on June 8. A US national has been killed in a drive-by shooting and another American (is) believed to have been kidnapped yesterday amid a bloody campaign by Al Qaeda to drive Western "infidels" out of the kingdom.

From AP at Yahoo: 10:27pm ET Fri, Jun 18, 2004
Saudis Kill Suspect in Hostage Beheading By SALAH NASRAWI
RIYADH, Saudi Arabia - An al-Qaida cell beheaded American engineer Paul M. Johnson Jr., and in a swift retaliation, officials said Saudi security forces tracked down and killed the leader of the terrorist group in a shoot-out Friday. ...
President Bush said the execution "shows the evil nature of the enemy we face. They're trying to get us to retreat from the world," Bush said. "America will not retreat. America will not be intimidated by these kinds of extremist thugs. May God bless Paul Johnson." ...

From Reuters: Sun Jun 20, 2004 04:24 AM ET
Saudi Arabia Tells Militants to Repent or Die By Ghaida Ghantous
RIYADH (Reuters) - Saudi Arabia warned Muslim militants they would share the fate of their slain leader unless they repented, as al Qaeda vowed renewed "holy war" in the kingdom. Al Qaeda's leader in Saudi Arabia, Abdulaziz al-Muqrin, was shot dead by Saudi forces Friday along with three other prominent militants hours after they beheaded American hostage Paul Johnson, whose body has still not been found. "We tell this deviant group and others that if they do not return to the right path, they will meet the same fate or worse," Saudi Arabia's de facto ruler Crown Prince Abdullah said late Saturday. "Security forces will deal with them, God willing, and with every aggressor inside or abroad," he added. ... "The government is strong and will eradicate the enemy and cleanse the country of them," Saudi Interior Minister Prince Nayef said. "God willing, we will be victorious." ... Saudi foreign policy adviser Adel al-Jubeir said Riyadh would pursue Islamic extremists without mercy. "We believe that with this blow to al Qaeda in Saudi Arabia yesterday, we have substantially weakened their organization. We will continue to pursue them with vigor until we eliminate them from our midst," Jubeir said. "We will show no mercy." ...

From News24: 21/06/2004 18:58 - (SA)
Ex-cop new al-Qaeda leader
Riyadh - A former Saudi police officer has taken over as leader of the al-Qaeda network on the Arabian peninsula after security forces killed Abdul Aziz al-Muqrin in a gunbattle in Riyadh, Arab media reported on Monday. Saleh Mohammad al-Oufi, 38, who is number four on the kingdom's list of most wanted militants, "has been designated al-Qaeda chief in Saudi Arabia, succeeding Abdul Aziz al-Muqrin," Asharq al-Awsat said. The Saudi-owned daily published in London sourced the news to al-Qaeda itself without further detail. The Saudi Institute, which bills itself as an independent news outfit based in Washington, quoted "intelligence" to confirm al-Oufi's appointment. ...

From The Associated Press at ABC News: June 24, 2004
Saudis Offer Militants One-Month Amnesty
Saudi Arabia Says Militants Who Surrender in the Next Month Won't Face the Death Penalty
JIDDAH, Saudi Arabia — Saudi Arabia gave Islamic militants in the kingdom one month to surrender and save their lives, vowing to unleash the government's "full might" on extremist groups that have attacked foreigners. ...

From Reuters: Thu Jul 15, 2004 11:40 PM ET
House Votes to Block Aid for Saudi Arabia By Anna Willard
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Lawmakers cheered as the House of Representatives voted on Thursday to strip financial assistance for Saudi Arabia from a foreign aid bill because of criticism that the country has not been sufficiently cooperative in the U.S. war on terror. The vote was a stinging defeat for the Bush Administration which had strongly opposed the measure saying it would "severely undermine" counterterrorism cooperation with Saudi Arabia and U.S. efforts for peace in the Middle East. ...

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