NAfter the fatal firearm attack on an American military base in Florida, the United States expels 21 Saudi military students. During the investigation into the attack, jihadist material and child pornography were found, Justice Minister Bill Barr said on Monday. The allegations are not sufficient for criminal prosecution. However, Saudi Arabia has decided that the behavior of prospective officers is inappropriate.
"The 21 officer candidates were advertised as part of their US military training program and will return to Saudi Arabia today," Barr said. In none of the cases is support for the attack of December 6th or knowledge of the perpetrator's plans.
"Contacts to child pornography"
A Saudi military student opened fire in a classroom building at Pensacola, Florida in December. He shot three American soldiers before he was killed in an exchange of fire with the police. "It was a terrorist attack," Justice Minister Barr said on Monday. The attacker was driven by "jihadist ideology".
In the course of the investigation, "Saudi jihadist or anti-American content" was found on 17 Saudi military students trained in the United States, Barr said. However, there was no evidence of belonging to or participating in terrorist groups or activities.
A total of 15 military students were found to have "contacts with child pornography," Barr said. While one of the military students had a large number of such pictures, the others only had one or two.
The United States Department of Defense suspended practical training of Saudi Arabian soldiers after the attack. The United States and Saudi Arabia are working closely together militarily. Hundreds of Saudi military personnel are trained in the United States each year.