Monday, August 16, 2004

Mueller's Patriot Act testimony

Testimony of Robert S. Mueller, III, Director, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Before the United States Senate Committee on the Judiciary


Good morning Mr. Chairman, Senator Leahy, and Members of the Committee. I am pleased to be here today to update you on the FBI's substantial progress in the counterterrorism and intelligence arenas since my last appearance before the Committee. I would also like to acknowledge that the progress the FBI has made in reforming our counterterrorism and intelligence programs is due in no small part to the enactment of the USA PATRIOT Act.

Every day, the men and women of the FBI demonstrate their determination to fulfill the great responsibility that you, and the public, have entrusted to them. As a result, the FBI has made steady progress in meeting our highest priority of preventing terrorism. The terrorist threat presents complex challenges. Terrorists move easily across international borders, use sophisticated technology to recruit, network, and communicate, and finance their operations with elaborate funding schemes. Above all, they are patient. They are methodical. They are determined to succeed.

But the FBI is equally determined to succeed. To defeat these threats, the FBI must have several critical capabilities: First, we must develop intelligence about terrorist activity and use that intelligence to disrupt their plans. Second, we must be global – we must work closely with our counterparts at home and abroad to develop and pool our collective knowledge and expertise. Third, we must use cutting-edge information technology to collect, analyze, manage, and share our information effectively. Most importantly, we must work within the framework of the Constitution, protecting our cherished civil liberties as we work to protect the American people.

Today, I would like to give you a brief overview of the steps we have taken to put these critical capabilities in place by reforming our counterterrorism and intelligence programs, as well as overhauling our information technology. Before I begin, however, I would like to acknowledge that none of our successes would have been possible without the extraordinary efforts of our partners in state and municipal law enforcement and our counterparts around the world. The Muslim, Iraqi, and Arab-American communities have also contributed a great deal to the war on terror. On behalf of the FBI, I would like to thank these communities for their assistance and for their ongoing commitment to preventing acts of terrorism. The country owes them a debt of gratitude.

PATRIOT ACT

Mr. Chairman, for over two and a half years, the PATRIOT Act has proved extraordinarily beneficial in the war on terrorism and has changed the way the FBI does business. Many of our counterterrorism successes, in fact, are the direct results of provisions included in the Act, a number of which are scheduled to "sunset" at the end of next year. I strongly believe it is vital to our national security to keep each of these provisions intact. Without them, the FBI could be forced back into pre-September 11 practices, attempting to fight the war on terrorism with one hand tied behind our backs.

Let me give you just a few examples that illustrate the importance of the PATRIOT Act to our counterterrorism efforts:

First and foremost, the PATRIOT Act – along with the revision of the Attorney General's investigative guidelines and the 2002 decision of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court of Review – tore down the wall that stood between the intelligence investigators responding to terrorist threats and the criminal investigators responding to those same threats.
• Prior to September 11, an Agent investigating the intelligence side of a terrorism case was barred from discussing the case with an Agent across the hall who was working the criminal side of that same investigation. For instance, if a court-ordered criminal wiretap turned up intelligence information, the criminal investigator could not share that information with the intelligence investigator – he could not even suggest that the intelligence investigator should seek a wiretap to collect the information for himself. If the criminal investigator served a grand jury subpoena to a suspect's bank, he could not divulge any information found in those bank records to the intelligence investigator. Instead, the intelligence investigator would have to issue a National Security Letter in order to procure that same information.

• The removal of the "wall" has allowed government investigators to share information freely. Now, criminal investigative information that contains foreign intelligence or counterintelligence, including grand jury and wiretap information, can be shared with intelligence officials. This increased ability to share information has disrupted terrorist operations in their early stages -- such as the successful dismantling of the "Portland Seven" terror cell -- and has led to numerous arrests, prosecutions, and convictions in terrorism cases.

• In essence, prior to September 11th, criminal and intelligence investigators were attempting to put together a complex jigsaw puzzle at separate tables. The Patriot Act has fundamentally changed the way we do business. Today, those investigators sit at the same table and work together on one team. They share leads. They fuse information. Instead of conducting parallel investigations, they are fully integrated into one joint investigation.

• Because of the creation of the Terrorist Threat Integration Center, and because the FBI has dramatically improved its information sharing with the CIA, the NSA, and a host of other federal, state, local and international partners, our resources are used more effectively, our investigations are conducted more efficiently, and America is immeasurably safer as a result. We cannot afford to go back to the days when Agents and prosecutors were afraid to share information.

Second, the PATRIOT Act gave federal judges the authority to issue search warrants that are valid outside the issuing judge's district in terrorism investigations. In the past, a court could only issue a search warrant for premises within the same judicial district – yet our investigations of terrorist networks often span multiple districts. The PATRIOT Act streamlined this process, making it possible for judges in districts where activities related to terrorism may have occurred to issue search warrants applicable outside their immediate districts.

In addition, the PATRIOT Act permits similar search warrants for electronic evidence such as email. In the past, for example, if an Agent in one district needed to obtain a search warrant for a subject's email account, but the Internet service provider (ISP) was located in another district, he or she would have to contact an AUSA and Agent in the second district, brief them on the details of the investigation, and ask them to appear before a judge to obtain a search warrant – simply because the ISP was physically based in another district. Thanks to the PATRIOT Act, this frustrating and time-consuming process can be averted without reducing judicial oversight. Today, a judge anywhere in the U.S. can issue a search warrant for a subject's email, no matter where the ISP is based.

Third, the PATRIOT Act updated the law to match current technology, so that we no longer have to fight a 21st-century battle with antiquated weapons. Terrorists exploit modern technology such as the Internet and cell phones to conduct and conceal their activities. The PATRIOT Act leveled the playing field, allowing investigators to adapt to modern techniques. For example, the PATRIOT Act clarified our ability to use court-ordered pen registers and trap-and-trace devices to track Internet communications. The Act also enabled us to seek court-approved roving wiretaps, which allow investigators to conduct electronic surveillance on a particular suspect, not a particular telephone – this allows them to continuously monitor subjects without having to return to the court repeatedly for additional authorizations. This technique has long been used to investigate crimes such as drug trafficking and racketeering. In a world in which it is standard operating procedure for terrorists to rapidly change locations and switch cell phones to evade surveillance, terrorism investigators must have access to the same tools.

In a final example, the PATRIOT Act expanded our ability to pursue those who provide material support or resources to terrorist organizations. Terrorist networks rely on individuals for fund-raising, procurement of weapons and explosives, training, logistics, and recruiting. The material support statutes allow investigators to aggressively pursue and dismantle the entire terrorist network, from the financiers to those who carry out terrorist plans. By criminalizing the actions of those who provide, channel, or direct resources to terrorists, the material support statutes provide an effective tool to intervene at the earliest possible stage of terrorist planning. This allows the FBI to arrest terrorists and their supporters before their deadly plans can be carried out.

For instance, the FBI investigated a case in Charlotte, North Carolina, in which a group of Lebanese nationals purchased mass quantities of cigarettes in North Carolina and shipped them to Michigan for resale. Their scheme was highly profitable due to the cigarette tax disparity between the two states. The proceeds of their smuggling were used to fund Hezbollah affiliates and operatives in Lebanon. Similarly, the FBI investigated a case in San Diego in which subjects allegedly negotiated with undercover law enforcement officials the sale of heroin and hashish in exchange for Stinger anti-aircraft missiles, which they indicated were to be sold to Al Qaida. In both cases, the material support provisions allowed prosecutors to charge the subjects and secure guilty pleas and convictions.

Mr. Chairman and Members of the Committee, the importance of the PATRIOT Act as a valuable tool in the war against terrorism cannot be overstated. It is critical to our present and future success. By responsibly using the statutes provided by Congress, the FBI has made substantial progress in its ability to proactively investigate and prevent terrorism and protect innocent lives, while at the same time protecting civil liberties.

COUNTERTERRORISM AND INTELLIGENCE PROGRAM REFORMS

Let me turn for a few moments to the progress the FBI has made in strengthening and reforming its counterterrorism and intelligence programs to support its number one goal of terrorism prevention. Today, the FBI is taking full advantage of our dual role as both a law enforcement and an intelligence agency. Let me give you just a few examples of the progress we have made:

• We have more than doubled the number of counterterrorism Agents, intelligence analysts, and linguists.

• We expanded the Terrorism Financing Operations Section, which is dedicated to identifying, tracking, and cutting off terrorist funds.

• We are active participants in the Terrorist Threat Integration Center and the Terrorist Screening Center, which provides a new line of defense against terrorism by making information about known or suspected terrorists available to federal, state, and local law enforcement.

• We have worked hard to break down the walls that have sometimes hampered our coordination with our partners in federal, state and local law enforcement. Today, the FBI and CIA are integrated at virtually every level of our operations. This cooperation will be further enhanced when our Counterterrorism Division co-locates with the CIA's Counter Terrorist Center and the multi-agency Terrorist Threat Integration Center.

• We expanded the number of Joint Terrorism Task Forces (JTTF) from 34 to 84 nationwide.

• We created and refined new information sharing systems, such as the National Alert System, that electronically link us with our domestic partners.

• We have sent approximately 275 FBI executives to the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University to receive training on executive leadership and strategic change.

Recognizing that a strong, enterprise-wide intelligence program is critical to our success across all investigations, we have worked relentlessly to develop a strong intelligence capability and to integrate intelligence into every investigation and operation across the FBI:

• We stood up the Office of Intelligence, under the direction of a new Executive Assistant Director for Intelligence. The Office of Intelligence sets unified standards, policies, and training for analysts, who examine intelligence and ensure it is shared with our law enforcement and intelligence partners. The Office of Intelligence has already provided over 2,600 intelligence reports and other documents for the President and members of the Intelligence Community.

• We established a formal analyst training program. We are accelerating the hiring and training of analytical personnel, and developing career paths for analysts that are commensurate with their importance to the mission of the FBI.

• We developed and are in the process of executing Concepts of Operations governing all aspects of the intelligence process – from the identification of intelligence requirements to the methodology for intelligence assessment to the drafting and formatting of intelligence products.

• We established a Requirements and Collection Management Unit to identify intelligence gaps and develop collection strategies to fill those gaps.

• We established Reports Officers positions and Field Intelligence Groups in the field offices, whose members review investigative information – not only for use in investigations in that field office – but to disseminate it throughout the FBI and among our law enforcement and Intelligence Community partners.

With these changes in place, the Intelligence Program is established and growing. We are now turning to the last structural step in our effort to build an intelligence capacity. In March, I authorized new procedures governing the recruitment, training, career paths and evaluation of our Special Agents – all of which are focused on developing intelligence expertise among our agent population.

The most far-reaching of these changes will be the new agent career path, which will guarantee that agents get experience in intelligence investigations and with intelligence processes. Under this plan, new agents will spend an initial period familiarizing themselves with all aspects of the Bureau, including intelligence collection and analysis, and then go on to specialize in counterterrorism, intelligence or another operational program. A central part of this initiative will be an Intelligence Officer Certification program that will be available to both analysts and agents. That program will be modeled after – and have the same training and experience requirements as – the existing programs in the Intelligence Community.

INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY IMPROVEMENTS

All the progress the FBI has made on all investigative fronts rests upon a strong foundation of information technology. Over the past two and a half years, the FBI has made tremendous efforts to overhaul our information technology, and we have made significant progress.

• Over 1,000 counterterrorism and counterintelligence FBI Headquarters employees have been provided with access to Top Secret/Sensitive Compartmented Information (TS/SCI) information at their desks.
• We implemented the Wide Area Network and the Enterprise Operations Center on schedule in March 2003.

• We improved data warehousing technology to dramatically reduce stove-piping and cut down on man-hours that used to be devoted to manual searches.

• The Full Site Capability deployment began in February of this year, and was completed on April 29th. Altogether, nearly 30,000 workstations have been converted to the new Trilogy baseline software and new email system.

• We now have a permanent Chief Information Officer and Chief Technology Officer, who oversee the development and management of all IT projects and systems throughout the FBI. It is important to keep in mind that Trilogy is not the FBI's sole IT system – the FBI has over 200 IT systems, all of which must be maintained, enhanced when necessary, and certified and accredited for security.

As you know, during the past year we have encountered some setbacks regarding the deployment of Trilogy's Full Site Capability (FSC) and the Virtual Case File. Our goal is to deliver Virtual Case File capabilities by the end of this year. You are aware that last week, the National Research Council of the National Academies (NRC) released a report reviewing the Trilogy IT Modernization program. The FBI commissioned this review as part of our ongoing efforts to improve our capabilities to assemble, analyze and disseminate investigative and operational data both internally and externally with other intelligence and law enforcement agencies.

Many of the NRC's recommendations have already been implemented or are a work in progress. The FBI has repeatedly sought outside evaluation and advice throughout its IT modernization efforts and will continue to do so. The NRC report specifically noted that the counterterrorism mission requires extensive information sharing, and recommended that the FBI involve other agencies in its modernization program. We will continue to work closely with other Department of Justice Agencies and members of the Homeland Security and Intelligence Communities to ensure the FBI has the right technology to support information sharing and other mission requirements.

CONCLUSION

With our counterterrorism, intelligence, and information technology initiatives firmly in place, the FBI is moving steadily forward, always looking for ways to evolve and improve so that we remain a step ahead of our enemies. We are looking at ways to assess and adjust our resource needs based on threats, in order to ensure that we have the personnel and resources to meet and defeat all threats.

Mr. Chairman, I would like to commend the men and women of the FBI for their hard work and dedication – dedication both to defeating terrorism and to upholding the Constitution. They have embraced and implemented the counterterrorism and intelligence reforms I have outlined for you today and they are committed to upholding their duty to protect the citizens of the United States.

Mr. Chairman, thank you again for the Committee's support of the FBI and for the opportunity to be here this morning.

I would be happy to answer any questions you might have

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GREECE :More White Powder Discovered in Athens Suburbs Post Office

This From OSAC

GREECE

from Elevtherotipia on Saturday, August 14, 2004

Translated by FBIS from Greek to English:

The alarm was raised at the Metaxourgion ELTA [Greek Posts] on 29 Koumoundourou street when suspicious white powder was discovered among the packages. The powder, which weighed approximately 5 gms and had the texture of flour, was found on a shelf on the first floor of the building in the package delivery department. Men of the team handling dangerous substances hurried to the scene wearing special uniforms and received the suspicious package. All procedures in place were followed (the area and the employees who came into contact with the powder were sterilized) and the package was given to the representatives of the Special Infections Center and the State Laboratory. The results are expected today but according to initial assessments there is nothing alarming.

The final test results for the yellow powder that was discovered at the Elevtherios Venizelos ELTA a few days ago were announced officially and they are negative.

Copyright 2004 Athens Elevtherotipia.

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Pakistan - Voices of Jehad

This from South Asia Terrorism Portal

Pakistan - Voices of Jehad

"May Allah destroy America and Britain… May Allah help the Mujahedeen in Iraq, Kashmir, Palestine, Chechnya and around the world."

Maulana Mohammed Ishaq, Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal (MMA) leader,
Islamabad, April 11, 2003.


"The holiest soil on earth is that of Pakistan and we cannot tolerate the unholy presence of Nancy Powell on our holy land. Her presence keeps us away from Allah's blessings. Pakistan should cleanse itself from her unholy existence… Allah has told us to make atom bombs. America is telling us not to. Who should we listen to O Muslims, Allah or America? Kashmir will not be solved by talks, not by American arbitration, not by its division but only by jihad, jihad, jihad!... The Hindus were terrorists yesterday, they are terrorists today and they will remain terrorists tomorrow. We are right in seeking revenge from these spawns of evil."

- Taped speech of Hafiz Muhammad Saeed, chief of Lashkar-e-Toiba, played on Kashmir Day,
at the Jamia Mosque Ghousia, Rawalpindi, February 2003.


"I have come here because this is my duty to tell you that Muslims should not rest in peace until we have destroyed America and India."

- Masood Azhar, Chief of Jaish-e-Mohammad, January 5, 2000.

"We pray that Iraqis would continue to resist American tyranny and terror and we believe victory will come to them in the long run… History would record the sacrifice of Iraqi people in defence of their sovereignty and independence threatened by US imperialism… The attack was motivated by US designs to grab oil resources of the Iraqi people and enslave them."

- Qazi Hussain Ahmed, Chief of Jamaat-e-Islami, Islamabad, April 10, 2003.

"We have the nuclear capability that can destroy Madras (India), surely the same missile can do the same to Tel Aviv. Washington cannot stop Muslim suicidal attacks. Taliban are still alive and along with "friends" they will continue the holy jihad against the U.S. America will destroy Iraq and later on repeat the same act of war against Pakistan, Iran, Syria and Saudi Arabia."

- Gen. Hamid Gul, former ISI chief, Islamabad, March 2003.


Many Western Scholars have pointed their accusing fingers at some of the … verses in the Qur’an to be able to contend that world of Islam is in a state of perpetual struggle against the non-Muslims. As to them it is sufficient answer to make, if one were to point out, that the defiance of God’s authority by one who is His slave exposes that slave to the risk of being held guilty of treason and such a one, in the perspective of Islamic law, is indeed to be treated as a sort of that cancerous growth on that organism of humanity, which has been created "Kanafsin Wahidatin" that is, like one, single, indivisible self. It thus becomes necessary to remove the cancerous malformation even if it be by surgical means (if it would not respond to other treatment), in order to save the rest of Humanity… The idea of Ummah of Mohammad, the Prophet of Islam, is incapable of being realised within the framework of territorial states much less made an enduring basis of viewing the world as having been polarised between the world of Islam and the world of war. Islam, in my understanding, does not subscribe to the concept of the territorial state…

Allah Buksh K. Brohi, "Preface", in Brigadier S.K. Malik,
The Quranic Concept of War, 1986, pp. xix-xx.

"Terror struck into the hearts of the enemies is not only a means, it is the end in itself. Once a condition of terror into the opponent’s heart is obtained, hardly anything is left to be achieved. It is the point where the means and the end meet and merge. Terror is not a means of imposing decision upon the enemy (sic); it is the decision we wish to impose upon him."

- Brig. S.K. Malik, The Quranic Concept of War, 1986, p. 59.

America wants to destroy all Muslim countries one after another, so let us go and fight in the way of Allah.

- Maulana Rahmatullah, Tanzeem-i-Ulma, Peshawar, April 3, 2003

If the U.S. attacks Iraq, the MMA alliance and all their supporters will attack Washington and Tel Aviv.

- Sami ul-Haq, MMA leader, Islamabad, March 2003

There are thousands ready to go for Jihad but they are waiting for the request from the Taliban.

- Maulana Mohammad Alam, Leader of Tehreek Nifaz-e-Shariat Mohammadi,
Peshawar, November 8, 2001

We will provide logistic support to the Taliban and will also provide information about Americans if the present regime did not stop supporting the US troops stationed in Pakistan.

- Hafiz Hussain Ahmed, Deputy Secretary-General, Jamaat-Ulema-e-Islam (Fazlur faction), Hyderabad, October 30, 2001

The Taliban are a symbol of Islam. This will be a long war against the infidel forces. They want to eliminate Muslims.

- Maulana Samiul Haq, Chief of his own faction of Jamaat-Ulema-e-Islam,
Karachi, October 26, 2001


The United States has waged a crusade against the Muslims and, unfortunately, Pakistan's rulers are supporting her to carry out the genocide of Afghans in the name of curbing so-called terrorism… Musharraf is playing the role of an informer of the US and Islam declares the death penalty for such people.

- Sheikh Aqeelur Rehman, District President, Jamaat-e-Islami,
Muzaffarabad, October 26, 2001


American repression and imperialism is a challenge for the entire Muslim world… [linking Osama with attacks in the US is part of a plan to pave wave for the US’] sinister plans to strike against Afghanistan.

- Joint statement by Jaish-e-Mohammad, Harkat-ul-Mujahideen,
Al Badr and Jamiat-ul- Mujahideen, September 19, 2001

The real war has just started… After Palestine and Afghanistan, now Iraq will also give birth to holy warriors. Who will free me from the clutches of Jews?

- Zarb-e-Momin, publication backed by Jaish-e-Mohammed, April 2003.

Muslim blood is being extracted to serve Jews' interest.

- Zarab-e-Taiba, publication backed by Lashkar-e-Toiba, April 2003.

"This is a matter of happiness for us that we are going to announce the holy war against Bush and his cronies from NWFP where the members of religious alliance are in power… It's enough and an eye opener for the Muslim Ummah to retaliate immediately as God's enemies (Americans and Britons) have imposed the worst kind of brutalities on the innocent Muslims… The MMA government must take steps for sending the faithful to Iraq to fight alongside their Iraqi brothers… Jihad is the lone weapon with Muslims to safeguard their rights and honour while such US attacks and cruelties on the Muslim would open more doors of the holy war."

- Hafiz Muhammad Saeed, chief of Lashkar-e-Toiba, Peshawar, March 30, 2003.

"We do not consider ourselves separate from Taliban or Afghanistan. Our history, our religion and blood and culture are the same. The Taliban government is our ideal government and we want a similar one in Pakistan because it has peace, equality and justice. We consider the war against Osama and Taliban a war against us, Pakistanis and Pakistan."

- Maulana Azam Tariq, Member of National Assembly from Jhang constituency and chief of Sunni group Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistan, January 2003.

The US can declare us terrorists, but even then, we will continue waging war in India… The military government's biggest mistake is that it is not wising up its own people on the crucial juncture in the freedom movement in Kashmir… Pakistan must complete its nuclear programme and strengthen its defence missile system to apply pressure on India besides taking its own people into confidence… We must not toe the US line in Afghanistan as it would be our greatest support in case of war with India. Support from China and the Islamic world should also be sought in this regard.

Hafiz Muhammad Saeed, chief of Lashkar-e-Toiba, Karachi Press Club, May 11, 2001.


Bush wants the world to embrace Christianity. Muslims are being oppressed in Kashmir, Palestine, Bosnia, Chechnya and India. Muslim women are being raped in these countries. Jihad, under such a situation becomes obligatory… Jamaat will not confront with the army, but continue to wage jihad in the world. War with the infidels will not end through negotiations but through fighting. There is no possibility of compromise with the infidels.

Hafiz Abdul Salam, Lashkar-e-Toiba, Patoki, Punjab province, during a three-day convention, December 2002

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Sunday, August 15, 2004

Aphrodite's "Conservative" Apprentices

Nutwatch 2004 has seen some rather odd pronouncements, actions and reactions but here, thanks to Cool Drink, is an article that comes close to the ulimate in the argument for forced sterilization Just When You Thought It Was Safe To Go Back Into The Gene Pool

Now I must admit, the idea of having some idealistic nymphette sent over for an evening or two is a very creative and thought-provoking, vote-getting strategy--if you overlook the obvious public health issues--but like most things--the wacko liberal left has to turn the idea into a questioning of the manhood or womanhood of republican's and since it's a slow news day--maybe an opportunity to get creative as well with some ideas of our own.

Feel free to send your comments/pictures/suggestions here or to Drink This

Would you rather play with the party of Jack and Jeri Ryan or the party of James E. McGreevey ... it's your call
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Abdullah Pleased With 9/11 Report---Say What?


This from Exposed to the Heat Got news for you there prince--most of the Hijackers were Saudis as is Bin Laden and all of them were MUSLIMS--Your country let loose the Wahhabi monsters and now they are out seeking WMD in the name of your religion.



Staff Writer



JEDDAH — Crown Prince Abdullah yesterday expressed satisfaction over the 9/11 Commission’s report on Saudi Arabia and said it had exonerated the Kingdom and Islam from terrorist charges.



The 9/11 Commission confirmed last month that it had found no evidence that the government of Saudi Arabia funded Al-Qaeda terrorist network and the 9/11 hijackers received funding from Saudi citizen Omar Al-Bayoumi, or from Princess Haifa Al-Faisal, wife of Ambassador to the United States Prince Bandar ibn Sultan.



“Thank God, the commission has acquitted your country as well as Islam. This is very important for us. I can assure you that your government is going ahead in the path of truth and justice,” Prince Abdullah said while addressing a group of citizens who voiced their support to the Kingdom’s efforts to stamp out terrorism.



Prince Abdullah reiterated that Saudi security forces would continue their campaign to hunt down the remaining terrorists on the wanted list. “With regard to the deviant group, we are after them,” he said referring to Al-Qaeda sympathizers.



“Those who try to undermine the Kingdom will be disappointed and will have a disgraceful end,” the crown prince said.



Prince Abdullah received delegations of Hamdan and Al-Hamda tribes who denounced the terrorist attacks targeting the Kingdom and its holy places and supported the measures taken by the government to ensure security and stability in the country.

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