Patterns of Global Terrorism 2000 - Saudi Arabia

Several threats against US military and civilian personnel and facilities in Saudi Arabia were reported in 2000, but there were no confirmed terrorist incidents. At year's end Saudi authorities were investigating a shooting by a lone gunman who opened fire on British and US nationals near the town of Khamis Mushayt in early August 2000. The gunman fired more than 100 rounds on a Royal Saudi Air Force checkpoint, killing one Saudi and wounding two other Saudi guards. The gunman was wounded in the exchange of fire.

Terrorist Usama Bin Ladin, whose Saudi citizenship was revoked in 1994, continued to publicly threaten US interests in Saudi Arabia during the year. In a videotaped statement released in September, Bin Ladin once again publicly threatened US interests.

The Government of Saudi Arabia continued to investigate the bombing in June 1996 of the Khubar Towers housing facility near Dhahran that killed 19 US military personnel and wounded some 500 US and Saudi personnel. The Government of Saudi Arabia publicly stated that it still was looking for three Saudi suspects whom it wanted for questioning in connection with the bombing and whom authorities believed to be currently outside Saudi Arabia. The Saudis continued to hold in detention a number of Saudi citizens linked to the attack, including Hani al-Sayegh, whom the United States expelled to Saudi Arabia in 1999.

The Government of Saudi Arabia reaffirmed its commitment to combating terrorism. It required nongovernmental organizations and private voluntary agencies to obtain government authorization before soliciting contributions for domestic or international causes. It was not clear that these regulations were enforced consistently; however, allegations continued to surface that some international terrorist organization representatives solicited and collected funds from private citizens in Saudi Arabia.


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