Saudi Arabia repatriates 21 of its cadets trained in the United States after a Saudi officer was shot in the US state of Florida.
According to a report by Reuters, the US Attorney General William Barr has called the shooting a terrorist incident.
The December 6 incident has further compounded US-Saudi relations during the ongoing tense situation between Iran and Saudi Arabia.
Deputy Sheriff shot and killed Second-Lieutenant Mohammad Saeed Al-Shamrani of the Armed Saudi Air Force following an incident in Pensacola, Florida.
William Barr provided details regarding activities prior to the Saeed al-Shamrani incident.
He said that 21 Saudi cadets had been stopped from training in the US military due to links to extremist organizations in the investigation and involvement of a few people in child pornography or found material on extremist or anti-American media on social media. Will leave America. ”
He pointed out that instead of expelling them from the United States, Saudi Arabia called back its own cadets.
He said the Saudi authorities had told him that they would file cases against them.
Justice Department officials told reporters on condition of anonymity that US officials have agreed to the removal decision.
William Barr said during a news conference that there was “no evidence of a trained Saudi man being involved in assisting Muhammad al-Shamrani or being notified in advance of the attack”.
It is noteworthy that the attack on the Pensacola Naval Air Station killed 3 US salesmen and injured 8 others.
William Barr said that ‘the incident is terrorism, evidence has shown that the attacker was a follower of extremist ideology’.
“During the investigation, it was revealed that the attacker left a message on September 11 stating that the countdown had started,” he said.
He said that Saeed al-Shamrani also visited a memorial built for victims of the September 11, 2001 attacks by Al Qaeda Saudi hijackers in New York City, and 2 hours before the attack on social networking websites. He also delivered anti-US, anti-Israel messages.
He said that “Apple, the mobile phone maker, has not been able to help the FBI open 2 mobile phones of Saeed Al-Shamrani and the FBI is trying to open the phone by itself”.
Apple issued a statement saying it denied the allegations of assistance in the investigation.
The company said that “Apple has responded promptly to numerous requests received from the FBI on the day of the incident and provided a large amount of data to investigators.”
William Barr said one Saudi man had found ‘large numbers’ of child pornography while the other 14 had one or two pictures and in most cases were sent to chat rooms by someone else. Or received via social media.
He said ‘social media accounts of 17 people including child pornography images have been found to contain extremist or anti-American content’.
“The humiliating material was not enough to warrant criminal action in the United States,” he said.
‘This act of theirs does not make them officers’
William Barr said that ‘Saudi Arabia has made it clear that this material shows that this process does not qualify them to be officers in the Royal Saudi Air Force and the Royal Navy’.
“Saudi Arabia has fully cooperated with the United States in counter-terrorism investigations and instructed trained Saudi officials to cooperate as well, while the state has assured that if US prosecutors prosecute them,” he said. If they decide to do so, they will send them back for trial. ‘
The US military’s relations with Saudi Arabia were strained after the war in Yemen and the assassination of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi.
US President Donald Trump has expressed scepticism over the CIA probe that it said that Saudi Wali Ahad Muhammad bin Salman and Saudi Wali Ahad issued orders for the assassination of Jamal Khashoggi, a critic of the covenant.
Donald Trump took the stand that Washington should not jeopardize its alliance with Riyaz.
The Pensacola attack has halted the training of 850 Saudi military personnel trained in various fields in the United States.
The Pentagon said December 19 that ‘no immediate threat of any kind was found in the revision of visiting Saudi people after the attack’.