The Saudi Embassy’s Statement of the December 6th Attack in Naval Air Station Pensacola

Following today’s press conference by Attorney General Bill Barr and the Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Christopher Wray, regarding the investigation into the attack at Naval Air Station Pensacola on December 6th, the embassy of Saudi Arabia in Washington would like to issue the following statement:

“The Embassy of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia reiterates its sincerest condolences to the American people on the tragedy that unfolded in December at Pensacola, Florida, and welcomes the announcement by U.S. law authorities of the recovery of critical intelligence from the assailant’s telephones.

As Attorney General William P. Barr and FBI Director Christopher Wray noted, Saudi Arabia has fully cooperated with U.S. law enforcement on the investigation, and we are continuing to provide full support to our American counterparts. We also have been coordinating with our American partners to better protect American and Saudi citizens from terrorist threats.

It is important to note that the military training the U.S. provides to Saudi military personnel has enabled Saudi soldiers, pilots and sailors to fight along their American counterparts and against our common foes. Our close intelligence and counterterrorism cooperation has saved lives in the United StatesSaudi Arabia and elsewhere, and undoubtedly made the world a safer place. Approximately 28,000 Saudis have undergone military training in the U.S. over the course of several decades.

As this attack tragically reminds us, the extremists and terrorists that threaten both our nations will not stop in their efforts to target innocent people. At this very moment, Al Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula, ISIS and other extremist groups are trying to use the extraordinary challenge of the covid-19 pandemic to elevate their profiles, spread their hateful propaganda and mobilize new global threats. We must stay on guard and never let up in our efforts to defeat terrorism.

This is why the Kingdom has been so committed to the restoration of security and stability in Yemen, where AQAP is based. We are determined not to let Yemen become another haven for global terrorist organizations, and we have worked closely with the United States to keep AQAP and ISIS on the run. Last June, Saudi forces scored a major counterterrorism victory by capturing Abu Osama al-Muhajir, ISIS’ leader in Yemen, in a raid in eastern Yemen.

Saudi Arabia will continue to use every means at our disposal to counter the men, mindset and money of terrorism that enables AQAP and others to recruit followers and threaten communities, or even entire nations. In Saudi Arabia, terrorists have struck our people, our military personnel and even Islam’s holiest sites in Mecca and Medina.

But we will never let the terrorists win, or allow their acts of hatred to divide us. The U.S.-Saudi partnership is one of the primary pillars of the global effort to dismantle and defeat terrorist networks such as AQAP. And our two countries will maintain our unbreakable commitment to combat the forces of evil, wherever they exist.”

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