RIYADH: Saudi Arabia on Wednesday said it welcomed the proposed release of classified documents by the US related to the 9/11 terrorist attacks in 2001.
The statement by the Saudi Embassy in Washington came after President Joe Biden ordered the US Justice Department to review documents from the FBI investigation into 9/11 for declassification and release.
The embassy said: “Since that horrific day 20 years ago, the leadership of Saudi Arabia has consistently called for the release of all materials related to the United States’ investigation of the attacks.
“The Kingdom has always advocated for transparency surrounding the September 11 tragedy. And as past investigations have revealed, including the 9/11 Commission and the release of the so-called “28 Pages,” no evidence has ever emerged to indicate that the Saudi government or its officials had previous knowledge of the terrorist attack or were in any way involved in its planning or execution.
“Any allegation that Saudi Arabia is complicit in the September 11 attacks is categorically false.”
The statement said Saudi Arabia had “unwaveringly condemned” the attacks against the US, which it described as its close ally and partner.
It said the Kingdom has also suffered from the “evil” of Al-Qaeda’s ideology and actions.
“Alongside the US, we have been Al-Qaeda’s top target, even before the September 11 attacks. And alongside the US, the Kingdom has spared no effort in tackling the men, money, and mindset of terrorism and extremism in all its forms,” the statement said.
Saudi Arabia is an essential counterterrorism partner to the US, the embassy added. The two countries have countered Daesh in Iraq and Syria, Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula and Daesh in Yemen.
The cooperation has saved thousands of lives in the past 20 years by foiling terrorist plots and making the world safer, the statement said.
“Saudi Arabia understands the indescribable pain and hardship of the families who lost loved ones on that unforgettable day.
“Previous declassification of materials relating to the September 11 attacks, such as the “28 Pages,” only have confirmed the 9/11 Commission’s finding that Saudi Arabia had nothing to do with this terrible crime. It is lamentable that such false and malicious claims persist.”
The statement said the full declassification of the documents, will end the baseless allegations against the Kingdom “once and for all.”