Saudi Arabia arrests 149 suspected of Qaeda links


Tihar Jail
Jun 3, 2010
RIYADH (Reuters) - Saudi Arabia has arrested 149 people from 19 cells linked to al Qaeda over the past 8 months and foiled attacks against government and security officials, the Interior Ministry said on Friday.



Oct 8, 2009
Saudi Arabia foils Al-Qaeda plot

RIYADH: Saudi security forces have arrested 149 people from 19 cells linked to the Al-Qaeda network in the past 8 months and foiled attacks against government and security officials as well as journalists, the Interior Ministry said on Friday.

In a press conference in Riyadh, ministry spokesman Maj. Gen. Mansour ibn Turki said a total of 2.24 million riyals ($597,237) were seized from suspected Al-Qaeda members trying to collect money and spread their ideology during the Haj and Umrah pilgrimages.

"In the past eight months 149 people linked to Al-Qaeda were arrested, among them were 124 Saudis and 25 were from other nationalities," Turki said.

Al-Turki said the assassination plots were in advanced stages of execution when they were uncovered. "Documents and weapons for the execution of the plots were seized. Action was also taken with the help of Interpol to arrest foreign and local people involved in the plots."

The spokesman said that advocates of deviant ideologies on Internet forums had usernames such as Killer, Anwar, Lover of Allah and Abu Rayyan. A woman militant who used a pseudonym on Internet forums was also tracked and arrested.

Al-Turki said that some of the militants entered the Kingdom on the pretext of performing Haj or Umrah and then went to secret locations for training.

He added that investigations are under way to trace the source of the militants' funding and stop them.

"The ministry calls upon anyone who placed himself in a dubious position or maintains terrorist links in any form to turn himself in to the departments concerned so that he realizes the error of his actions. His surrender will be taken into account at the time of his trial," Al-Turki said.

Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah said in a message to Haj pilgrims last week: "The terror that threatens the world is attributed to Muslims when it is caused by extremists who are outside the scope of the tolerant religion of Islam. The perpetrators of terror represent none but themselves even though they appear in the guise of Islam."

Global Defence

New threads