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Tags: Yemen | Saudi | Qaida | arrests

Saudi Al-Qaida Suspects Took Cues From Yemen

Thursday, 25 March 2010 08:57 PM EDT

Several of the more than 100 terror suspects accused of plotting to attack key oil and security facilities in Saudi Arabia were apparently taking their orders from Al Qaeda in Yemen and were ready to strike as soon as they got the go-ahead, a senior Saudi official said Thursday.

In a telephone interview with Fox News, Gen. Mansour Al-Turki, spokesman for the Saudi Ministry of Interior, said the arrest of the alleged plotters not only had prevented the attacks, but broken up a network of Al Qaeda-affiliated radicals that included two suicide bombing cells. He did not dispute news reports indicating that the plotters had been exchanging e-mails with a man in Yemen believed to be a senior leader of Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, or AQAP.

Al-Turki declined to identify which facilities the suspects were allegedly targeting, but he said one of the suspects, a Saudi national, was employed by a private Saudi industrial security company responsible for protecting oil sites and other critical infrastructure. “As an employee, he had access to all of those sites and to current plans for protecting them,” the general said.

The Ministry of Interior announced on Wednesday that 110 militants had been arrested in round-ups throughout the kingdom in the past five months. On Thursday, the ministry increased the total number of arrests to 113 -- 47 of them are Saudi, 51 Yemeni, and at least one each from Somalia, Bangladesh and Eritrea.

The sweep is among the largest anti-terrorism actions in several years. Saudi officials say that the suspects are members of AQAP, the Yemen-based group that has claimed responsibility not only for terrorist attacks inside Saudi Arabia and Yemen, but also for the foiled plot to blow up an American airliner approaching Detroit last Christmas.

To read full Fox News story — Go Here Now.

© Copyright 2023 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Thursday, 25 March 2010 08:57 PM
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