Bomber finally caught: Khobar Towers Arrest

Published: August 27, 2015

Bomber finally caught: Khobar Towers Arrest, Saudi Arabia has arrested the man accused as the mastermind of a 1996 bombing that killed 19 American airmen, a Saudi-owned pan-Arab newspaper reported on Wednesday, citing unnamed officials.

The suspect, Ahmed al-Mughassil, was identified in an American federal indictment as a senior leader of an Iranian-backed Saudi militant group that sought to kill American military personnel in the Persian Gulf.

The bombing destroyed an eight-story building in Khobar Towers, a complex housing American Air Force personnel stationed in Saudi Arabia. Four hundred people were wounded in the blast, in addition to the 19 who were killed.

Mr. Mughassil is believed to have been living in Beirut since the attack, under the protection of Hezbollah, the Iranian-backed Lebanese group. Asharq al-Awsat, the newspaper that reported the arrest, said he had been detained in Beirut and handed over to the Saudi authorities; it gave no further explanation.

A senior United States official in Washington who was briefed on the matter said on Wednesday that it was “likely” that Mr. Mughassil was in Saudi custody after apparently being seized in Lebanon. The official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss confidential intelligence and law enforcement reports, indicated that the American authorities were still waiting for additional details from Saudi officials, but expressed confidence that the mastermind of the Khobar attacks was no longer at large.


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