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U.S. Diplomats in Saudi Arabia Ordered Home Immediately

Posted May. 14, 2003 22:12,   


The suicide bombings which occurred on May 12 in the Saudi capital of Riyadh are now widely believed to have been an act of al Qaeda, an international terrorist organization which was behind the September 11 terrorist attacks. As al Qaeda warned of further terror attacks, the U.S. State Department ordered most of its diplomats in Saudi Arabia to return home on May 13.

“You should notice that the suicide bombings were conducted simultaneously. This is how al Qaeda carries out their acts of aggression,” said Jane Harman, U.S. Congresswoman on the House of Representatives’ Intelligence Committee.

A man who identified himself as head of an al Qaeda training camp, Abu Mohammed Al-Ablaj, sent an email stating that the attacks were conducted by al Qaeda and warned of further terror attacks, Al-Majallah, an authoritative Arabic weekly magazine published in London, reported on May 13.

“Saudi police had found al Qaeda members and weapons and arrested them, but couldn`t stop al Qaeda’s plan,” claimed the man in the email. He also claimed the group had caches of an enormous amount of weapons and ammunition in the Gulf Region and Arabian Peninsula and was planning another attack. The U.S. State Department ordered most of its diplomats working in the U.S. embassy in Riyadh and their families besides necessary agents to return home and dispatched the FBI to Riyadh on May 13.

“Whoever attacks American citizens, we will chase him and let him learn the meaning of American justice. Those who hide or protect terrorists will also be considered terrorists and will be punished,” said President George W. Bush in a speech in Indianapolis, Indiana on May 13.

U.S. and Saudi officials knew the terror attacks would occur but it`s been reported that they could not stop them. The U.S. State Department had already warned on May 1 that a terrorist group was in the final stages of organizing an attack in Saudi Arabia against U.S. related facilities, foreign media reported. In addition, Saudi police arrested several people who were planning a terror attack and found weapons on May 6, but could not locate the escaped terrorists.

“Despite secret investigations of the Saudi police, some terrorists successfully got away, hence raising suspicion that someone inside the Department of the Interior of the Saudi government is helping al-Qaeda,” the BBC reported.

“Saudi Arabia have opposed the idea of U.S. forces` stationing in their country during the war with Iraq and their demands have now been realized, hence there was motive regarding the country as being on the list of targets for terrorism. Al Qaeda probably conducted the attacks to force the tens of thousands of Americans as well as westerners who are still staying in Saudi Arabia after the withdrawal of U.S. forces from the Gulf,” the BBC analyzed. “The man behind the suicide bombings seems to be interested in gaining political power (in Saudi Arabia),” said the BBC.

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