Arrest of ’96 Alkhobar blast suspect ‘big achievement’

Updated 28 August 2015
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Arrest of ’96 Alkhobar blast suspect ‘big achievement’

JEDDAH: Saudi Arabia is holding the main suspect in the 1996 bombing of the Khobar Towers residence at a US military base in the country, Arab News’ sister publication, Asharq Al-Awsat reported Wednesday.

The newspaper said Ahmed Al-Mughassil, 48, leader of the Hezbollah Al-Hejaz who had been indicted by a US court for the attack that killed 19 US service personnel and wounded almost 500 people, had been captured in the Lebanese capital Beirut and transferred to Riyadh.
Both Riyadh and the Washington have accused Iran of being behind the truck-bomb attack, although Iran has denied any responsibility.
Asharq Al-Awsat quoted Saudi sources as saying the country’s security service had received information on Al-Mughassil’s presence in Beirut.
“The discovery of Al-Mughassil and his arrest in Lebanon and his subsequent transfer to Saudi Arabia is a qualitative achievement, for the man had been in disguise in a way that made it hard to identify him,” Asharq Al-Awsat said, without elaborating on when he was captured and who captured him.
In 2006, a US federal judge ordered Iran to pay $254 million to the families of 17 US service personnel killed in the attack in a judgment entered against the Iranian government, its security ministry and the Revolutionary Guards after they failed to respond to a lawsuit initiated more than four years earlier, Reuters said.
According to the 209-page ruling, the truck bomb involved in the attack was assembled in Lebanon’s Bekaa Valley, operated by Hezbollah and the Revolutionary Guards, and the attack was OK’d by Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. However, Iran denies the findings.
The FBI has offered a reward of up to $5 million for information leading directly to his apprehension or conviction.
The Khobar Towers dormitory complex housed US, British, French and Saudi military personnel attached to the nearby King Abdul Aziz air base.
Separately, a court in Jeddah jailed a Saudi for nine years on a conviction of spreading extremist and “terrorist” ideology on Twitter, the Al-Riyadh daily reported Wednesday.
He was also found guilty of calling for protests to demand the release of detainees held in cases linked to “national security” matters, it said.


Future leaders key to achieve ‘Vision 2030’

Updated 13 min 38 sec ago
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Future leaders key to achieve ‘Vision 2030’

JEDDAH: Saudi Minister of Civil Service and Chairman of the Institute of Public Administration Sulaiman Al-Hamdan inaugurated the “Developing Future Leaders” roundtable on Wednesday. 

“The Kingdom achieved a distinguished civilizational status due to the wise developmental policies adopted by King Salman’s government as part of its engagement to move forward and achieve more successes and allow the Kingdom to assume its proper regional and international position,” Al-Hamdan said.

“I hope this event will reflect positively on the Kingdom’s administrative development process through the achievement of its objectives,” he said, noting that “the Kingdom’s strategic approach and ambitious vision pose an unprecedented challenge to the civil service system on various levels.”

“The ministry sought to provide an integrated human resources management system by empowering government agencies to effectively play their developmental roles. It did so through a series of directives such as reviewing and developing the executive regulations of the civil service system.”

Dr. Mushabab Al-Qahtani, the institute’s director general, noted that “preparing a second generation of leaders will greatly contribute to the achievement of the Kingdom’s vision.” 

“The subjects of this event aim at highlighting the importance of developing future leaders while discussing the latest means to do so and the role of current leaders in the process,” he said.

“The Kingdom, with the directives of its wise leadership, drew a road map leading to the future national development. It accorded great attention to building and developing human capital,” he added, pointing out that “King Salman’s government greatly focused on administrative and human capital development. This stresses its keenness to develop future leaders through diverse projects, plans and initiatives in order to achieve a sustainable development.”