A newly declassified U.S. report into 9/11 suggests that the terrorist hijackers who attacked the World Trade Center and other targets in 2001 did, in fact, have some links to the Saudi government.
Known as the ’28 pages’, the secret document was part of an 838-page 2002 Congressional Joint Inquiry into the September 11 attacks and has been classified since the report’s completion.
However, following repeated calls for its release from politicians and relatives of 9/11 victims, the document was finally published by the House intelligence committee on Friday, CNN reports.
The report found that some of the 9/11 hijackers were in contact with and received support from individuals likely connected to the Saudi government.
The report reads:
According to various FBI documents and CIA memorandum, some of the September 11 hijackers, while in the United States, apparently had contacts with individuals who may be connected to the Saudi government.
However, the report makes clear that the alleged links, which were outlined in CIA and FBI intelligence reports, had not been independently verified and remained largely speculative, adding: “It should be clear that this Joint Inquiry has made no final determinations as to the reliability or sufficiency of the information.”
According to the BBC, the White House have also been keen to stress that the papers show there had been no official Saudi role in the 9/11 attacks and no top government link.
White House press secretary Josh Earnest said:
[The pages] don’t shed any new light or change any of the conclusions about responsibility for the 9/11 attacks.
This information does not change the assessment of the US government that there’s no evidence that the Saudi government or senior Saudi individuals funded al-Qaeda.
In a statement, Saudi Ambassador to the United States, Abdullah Al-Saud, said the Saudi government welcomed the release of the papers:
Several government agencies, including the CIA and the FBI, have investigated the contents of the ’28 Pages’ and have confirmed that neither the Saudi government, nor senior Saudi officials, nor any person acting on behalf of the Saudi government provided any support or encouragement for these attacks.
We hope the release of these pages will clear up, once and for all, any lingering questions or suspicions about Saudi Arabia’s actions, intentions, or long-term friendship with the United States.
You can read the full declassified ’28 pages’ for yourself here.