Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques condoles families of martyrs Otaibi, Harthi

Second Deputy Premier orders 100,000 rials in urgent aid to duty martyr Harbi’s family

Prince Ahmad bin Abdulaziz hails efforts, sacrifices of guards

Prince Faisal bin Khalid conveys Saudi leaders’ condolences to martyr Harthi’s family

Court hears lawyers of Yanbu terrorist cell defendants

The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud made two telephone calls with each of Saad Sharea Al-Otaibi, brother of duty martyr Colonel Abduljalil bin Sharea Al-Otaibi and duty martyr Sergeant Barak Al-Harthi who were killed to martyrdom in Al-Wadee'a incident at the border with Yemen recently.

During the call, the monarch expressed his personal profound condolences and on behalf of the Saudi people on the loss of two of best honest sons of this nation.

Commenting on the occasion, Saad Sharea Al-Otaibi said the call of the monarch heeled the injury of our family, wishing him long life and continuous health.

For his part, Abdullah Al-Harthi described 'the contact with the monarch as a great issue on our souls in his capacity as the kind father and king of all of us'.

Speaking on the occasion, Major General Zamim Al-Sawat, the Director General of the Border Guard, said the noble gesture by the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud to the families of the martyrs of the border guard is a continuation to the kind care he bestows on the personnel of the border guard.

He cited the condolences also extended to the families of the martyrs by each of Crown Prince Sultan bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Deputy Premier, Minister of Defense and Aviation and Inspector General, Prince Naif bin Abdulaziz, Second Deputy Premier and Minister of Interior, Prince Ahmed bin Abdulaziz, Deputy Minister of Interior, and Prince Mohammed bin Naif bin Abdulaziz, Assistant Minister of Interior for Security Affairs, as yet another proof of the care offered by the Saudi leadership to their people.

Prince Faisal Ibn Khalid Ibn Abdulaziz, Governor of Asir Province, conveyed the condolences of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah Ibn Abdulaziz Al Saud, the Crown Prince and the Second Deputy Premier, to the family of Martyr Sergeant Barrak Bin Ali Al-Harthi in Bishah Governorate.

The Prince expressed his pride of the Martyr and his actions that will be registered in the history of the sacrifices provided by citizens for their religion and country.

Prince Mishaal bin Abdullah bin Abdulaziz, Governor of Najran Region, conveyed the condolences of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Crown Prince Sultan bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Deputy Premier, Minister of Defense and Aviation and Inspector General, Prince Naif bin Abdulaziz, Second Deputy Premier and Minister of Interior, and Prince Ahmed bin Abdulaziz, Deputy Minister of Interior, on the duty martyrdom of Colonel Abduljalil bin Sharea Al-Otaibi at his family's home in Riyadh.

For their part, the family of the martyr thanked the Saudi leadership for their human gesture toward their son, describing his martyrdom as an honor and duty towards their religion, king and nation.

Prince Mohammed bin Naif bin Abdulaziz, Assistant Minister of Interior for Security Affairs, conveyed the condolences of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Crown Prince Sultan bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Deputy Premier, Minister of Defense and Aviation and Inspector General, Prince Naif bin Abdulaziz, Second Deputy Premier and Minister of Interior, and Prince Ahmed bin Abdulaziz, Deputy Minister of Interior, on the martyrdom of the duty martyr Sergeant Barak bin Ali Al-Harthi who was killed in action on Tuesday while chasing infiltrators at al-Wadiaa Center Force in Najran Region on the border with Yemen.

Visiting Bisha in the Southern parts of the Kingdom, Prince Mohammed bin Naif bin Abdulaziz extended the sorrow and sympathy of the Saudi leadership to the family of Al-Harthi. For his part, the father of Al-Harthi thanked the Saudi leadership for their human gesture toward their son, and vowed that all his sons will be ready to defend the nation and its leadership.

Prince Mohammed visited Sergeant Abboud bin Faleh Al-Aklabi to get reassured of his health after the injury he suffered following his brave participation in a battle to obstruct infiltrators across the Kingdom's border with Yemen recently.

At Riyadh Security Forces Hospital, Prince Mohammed bin Naif bin Abdulaziz conveyed the greetings of Prince Naif bin Abdulaziz, Second Deputy Premier and Minister of Interior, and Prince Ahmed bin Abdulaziz, Deputy Minister of Interior, to the injured, wishing him quick recovery.

Prince Mohammed bin Naif bin Abdulaziz was reassured by doctors on the stable situation of Al- Aklabi, thanking him for the services he rendered for his religion, king and nation.

For his part, the injured thanked the Saudi leadership for their not extraordinary human gesture toward him.

He also visited Staff Sergeant Abdullah bin Fahd Al-Mitairi to get reassured of his health after the injury he suffered following a battle in Shagra Province recently to apprehend a drug peddler who unexpectedly hit him on the head with an acute axe and being rushed unconscious to hospital.

The attacker was immediately caught.

At the hospital, Prince Mohammed bin Naif bin Abdulaziz conveyed the greetings of Prince Naif bin Abdulaziz, Second Deputy Premier and Minister of Interior, and Prince Ahmed bin Abdulaziz, Deputy Minister of Interior, to the injured, wishing him quick recovery.

Prince Mohammed bin Naif bin Abdulaziz was reassured by doctors on the stable situation of Al- Mitairi, thanking him for the services he rendered for his religion, king and nation. For his part, the injured thanked the Saudi leadership for their not extraordinary human gesture toward him.

Meanwhile, Prince Naif Ibn Abdulaziz Al Saud, Second Deputy Premier and Minister of Interior, gave directives to offer 100,000 rials in urgent aid to the family of Sergeant Major Muwanas Bin Oqail al-Harbi of the al-Qusaim security patrols, who was shot dead by an attacker recently.

In Riyadh, Prince Ahmad Ibn Abdulaziz, Vice Minister of Interior, is patronizing a graduation ceremony for diploma training courses from Higher Institute for Security Studies at King Fahd Security College. The College's Director General, Major General Dr. Fahd bin Ahmed Al-Shaalan has expressed his thanks to and appreciation of the Prince for patronizing the ceremony.

As many as 15 departments have benefited from diploma programs including 94 cadets.

On the other hand, six defendants among the eleven Al-Qaeda suspects blamed for the 2004 Yanbu terrorist attack acknowledged Saturday before the court that Mustafa Al-Ansari was the leader of the operation that killed six Westerners and a Saudi National Guard officer and wounded at least 50 others.

The six men pleaded innocent in an unprecedented trial that has been open to the public, and they claimed their confessions were coerced using physical and psychological torture.

The eleven suspects have been in jail since their arrest shortly after the attack. Some of the accused claimed they have been imprisoned unjustly and are demanding compensation.

The second hearing in the trial began at 9 a.m. before a thee-member bench, a common feature of Saudi court cases. Four representatives of the government's Human Rights Commission and members of the media were present during the proceedings.

Court cases in the kingdom are typically closed to all but those involved in the case. Security was light, too, with only two security officers in the room.

Justice Minister Muhammad Al-Eissa said the ministry considered the participation of the media and rights officials in the trial a guarantee of justice. “We feel that this is very important to ensure the fairness of our justice system and the efficiency of our judges in terms of power and trustworthiness,” he said.

He also disclosed plans to publish a number of verdicts related to terrorism and state security cases.

“We have utmost confidence in the verdicts issued by our courts. There is nothing to wonder as they follow Shariah and other relevant regulations,” the minister said, adding that international legal experts have commended the criminal verdicts issued by Saudi courts.

Al-Eissa hoped that reporters covering the terror trial would convey the truth to the public and the fairness of our justice system based on the Qur’an and Sunnah.

All the six defendants rejected the accusation they were members of Al-Qaeda. They reiterated their allegiance to the Saudi rulers and approved the system followed by the government and views of Saudi Islamic scholars.

They said they simply sympathized with Al-Ansari when he returned to the Kingdom after 10 years because of their family relations with him.

They were confident Al-Ansari would change his views, especially after he brought his wife and children from abroad.

They said they were enticed by the three who carried out the Yanbu attack.

“We never thought the three had any connection with terrorism as they were holding reputable jobs,” the defendants told the judges, adding that they were cheated by the perpetrators of the attack, exploiting their family relations.

Two defendants asked the judge to appoint lawyers to defend them and the judge agreed to that request.

Four militants from a 15-member terror cell stormed the headquarters of a Saudi contractor in Yanbu on May 1, 2004 and opened fire on workers indiscriminately.

The militants fled the area when they saw security officers and took refuge in a residential district after seizing cars of citizens by force. Police killed three of the militants and arrested a fourth. Two Americans, two Britons and an Australian were killed in the attack.

The first defendant denied that one of the four attackers belonged to the wanted terrorists. He also denied the accusation that he allowed one of the attackers to use his car.

He said he had not received any amount of money from any person and had not taken any material from his school’s laboratory. He said he dealt with the attackers without having any suspicion about their activities.

The second suspect said he was not aware of the terrorist operation. He said he visited his brother Al-Ansari in order to convince him to return to the Kingdom as per the desire of their mother.

“But Al-Ansari, who had connections with renegades Al-Masaary and Al-Faqeeh, feared that he would be jailed once he returns to the Kingdom,” the second suspect said and denied charges that he smuggled Al-Ansari from Jazan to Makkah.

“Al-Ansari had his civil ID with him during the trip and I never thought he was carrying a bomb to attack innocent people.” He admitted that one of the attackers was a wanted terrorist.

However, he pointed out that he had tried to change the mind of that person. He admitted that his brother had used his ID for moving around in the Kingdom. He said he helped the attackers to buy large quantities of weapons to get some money as he was jobless at that time.

Before the attack, he reached a deal with a weapons trader and received 30 Kalashnikov rifles and 16 caches of live ammunition. He said he had asked the fourth defendant to carry some of the weapons to Makkah and sold them to some of the attackers.

He said he stopped selling the weapons after the beginning of terrorist operations in the country. He said he had sold only three guns to the attackers.