Politics

FBI releases hundreds of declassified documents on September 11th attacks

On Wednesday, the FBI released hundreds of pages of newly declassified documents regarding its extensive effort to examine connections between the Saudi government and September 11 attacks.

The release marks almost two months since another report was released by the FBA discussing “significant logistic support” that two of the Saudi hijackers obtained in the U.S.

For several years, agents investigated support several of the hijackers received after their entry in the U.S. The agents focused on whether three Saudi nationals, specifically a Saudi Embassy official in Washington, had knowledge of the attacks prior to their occurrence. The documents also detailed an investigation into Omar al-Bayoumi, who had been thought to be a Saudi student in California.

He was suspected of providing logistical support to Nawaf Al-Hazmi and Khalid Al-Mihdhar, two of the hijackers. Investigators concluded, though, that there was not enough evidence to charge any of those individuals with providing illegal support to the hijackers, according to an FBI memo released in May; that memo was included in the pages released on Wednesday as well. 

In that memo, the FBI noted that al Qaeda “did not make the attack plans known in advance of others” out of fear that word would get out. “Specifically, in relation to the 9/11 attacks, the hijackers knew there was a martyrdom operation, but did not know about the nature of the operation until shortly before the attack for operational security reasons,” reads the memo.

The Saudi Embassy in Washington did not comment immediately but previously issued a statement in September calling allegations of complicity malicious and categorically false.The documents are the latest materials released under President Biden’s executive order aimed at declassifying investigative reports related to the attacks. Another document was released from a separate investigation on the 20th anniversary of the attacks this past September. Those records have been sought extensively by victims’ relatives as they sue in federal court, trying to prove that the Saudi government was complicit.

The documents are the latest materials released under President Biden’s executive order aimed at declassifying investigative reports related to the attacks. Another document was released from a separate investigation on the 20th anniversary of the attacks this past September. Those records have been sought extensively by victims’ relatives as they sue in federal court, trying to prove that the Saudi government was complicit.

ARTICLE: ELIZABETH HERTZBERG

MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE

PHOTO CREDITS: AP NEWS

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