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Wednesday, April 27, 2011     INTELLIGENCE BRIEFING

Saudis, in first, reports major foreign presence in Al Qaida network

ABU DHABI — Saudi Arabia has reported a large foreign involvement in Al Qaida's regional network.


Officials said Saudi Arabia has been prosecuting more than 1,300 foreigners linked to Al Qaida plots. They said the foreigners were accused of conspiracy or direct involvement in Al Qaida attacks in the kingdom.

"This has not been our policy to point out the nationalities," Interior Minister spokesman Maj. Gen. Mansour Al Turki said.

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Al Turki said Saudi authorities have placed 1,325 foreigners on trial for insurgency offenses. He said another 10,000 Saudis were arrested since Al Qaida's terror strikes in the United States in September 2011 in which more than 3,000 people were killed, Middle East Newsline reported.

About half of those arrested since 2001 were released by Saudi Arabia, mostly because of lack of evidence. He said another 1,612 suspects were convicted of security offenses while 616 people were under investigation.

In an interview to the Jedda-based Arab News, Al Turki said 603 insurgency defendants were on trial. He said nearly 1,000 people were being processed for prosecution.

"The Saudi prosecution is preparing lists of charges against 934 people and is investigating the cases of 1,931 others," Al Turki said.

Saudi Arabia has sought to rehabilitate Al Qaida operatives. Earlier this monthy, the Saudis released 15 insurgents who completed a year-long rehabilitation program in Riyad.

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