20 years after the attacks: FBI releases 9/11 investigation document

As of: 12.09.2021 9:07 a.m.

Twenty years after the 9/11 attacks, the US Federal Police, the FBI, released a document that had previously been kept under lock and key. Al-Qaeda, meanwhile, calls in a new video to fight the West.

The US Federal Police, the FBI, has released the first document in connection with its investigation into the attacks on September 11, 2001 and alleged involvement of the Saudi Arabian government. The FBI followed an instruction from US President Joe Biden, from whom relatives of the victims had requested this step. The partially blackened 16-page document outlines contacts between the kidnappers of the four passenger planes and Saudi Arabian officials. However, there is no evidence that the Riyadh government was involved in the attacks, which killed nearly 3,000 people.

Previous investigations found no evidence of involvement

Saudi Arabia had repeatedly stated that it played no role in the attacks. His embassy in Washington initially did not comment on the FBI publication. In a statement on September 8, she said that Saudi Arabia had always advocated transparency regarding the events of September 11, 2001, and that it welcomed the United States’ release of classified information in this context. Earlier investigations have provided no evidence that the Saudi Arabian government or its employees were informed about the attacks in advance or were in any way involved.

15 of the 19 hijackers of the aircraft came from Saudi Arabia. Osama bin Laden’s al-Qaeda had committed itself to the attacks. This came from Saudi Arabia. A US government commission found no evidence that Saudi Arabia, a close ally of the US, provided direct financial support to al Qaeda. It remained open, however, whether individual officials in the kingdom did this. The relatives of around 2,500 of those killed and more than 20,000 injured, as well as a number of companies and insurers, have sued Saudi Arabia for billions of dollars.

Relatives have high expectations of education

In a statement on behalf of the organization 9/11 Families United, Terry Strada, whose husband Tom was killed in the attacks, said the document released by the FBI removed all doubts about Saudi complicity. “Now the secrets of the Saudis are uncovered and it is long time the kingdom took on the role of its officials in the murder of thousands on American soil.”

Al-Qaeda chief Al-Zawahiri speaks up

Al-Qaeda has meanwhile released a new video message from its leader Aiman ​​al-Zawahiri. In the film, which was distributed on social media on Saturday, Al-Zawahiri calls on its supporters to fight the states in the West and their allies in the Middle East. The video, which is around 60 minutes long, shows the first speech by the al-Qaeda chief since there were unconfirmed rumors about his death at the end of last year.

Analysts see evidence in the new recording that Al-Zawahiri was alive at least earlier this year. For example, he mentioned an attack on the Russian military in northwest Syria on January 1, tweeted the director of the Site Intelligence Group, which specializes in propaganda by extremists, Rita Katz. Al-Zawahiri also deals with the withdrawal of the US military from Afghanistan. The US left the country “broken and defeated” after 20 years of war, he explains.

Al-Zawahiri accuses Arab states of “treason”

Al-Zawahiri said the 9/11 attacks were “an injury” the US had never experienced. He describes the rapprochement between several Arab states on Israel as “treason”. It is a “crusade” led by America: “And Israel is one of the most important tools of this crusade.” The United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Sudan and Morocco had agreed with Israel last year to normalize their diplomatic relations.

The Egyptian Al-Zawahiri is the successor to Osama bin Laden, who was considered to be the head of the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001 in the USA. Bin Laden was killed by a US special forces unit in Pakistan in 2011. The US has put a bounty of 25 million dollars (around 21 million euros) on Al-Zawahiri. So far, experts have assumed that he is hiding in the border area between Afghanistan and Pakistan.

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