The United States of America has added a wanted Saudi citizen and a senior al Qaeda leader to the list of Specially Designated Global terrorists.
Ahmed Abdullah Saleh al-Khazmari al-Zahrani, better known as Abu Maryam al-Zahrani is a senior member of al-Qa’ida, a designated Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO).
Abu Maryam al-Zahrani is a Saudi citizen currently wanted for extradition by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for participating in terrorist activities and for his ties to al-Qa’ida.
Reports say Al Zahrani is on Saudi Arabia’s list of 85 most-wanted terrorists that was issued in February 2009.
In addition, the US State Department reports Abu Maryam al-Zahrani is the subject of Interpol Red and Orange Notices because of his membership in al-Qa’ida and his involvement in terrorism.
“Abu Maryam al-Zahrani travelled to Afghanistan and Pakistan from Saudi Arabia to join al-Qa’ida prior to 2007 and is closely connected to many senior al-Qa’ida leaders.” – US State Department
Media reports say the wanted al-Zahrani has been in Pakistan since at least 2009.
According to US State Department, the designation under E.O. 13224 blocks all of Abu Maryam al-Zahrani’s property interests subject to U.S. jurisdiction and prohibits U.S. persons from engaging in transactions with or for the benefit of al-Zahrani.
“The action taken against this individual demonstrates the United States’ resolve in eliminating al-Qa’ida’s ability to execute violent attacks.” – US State Department
Reports say Al Zahrani is also notorious for his jihadist propaganda.
Al Zahrani is the second Saudi al Qaeda leader to have been added to the US’s list of Specially Designated Global Terrorists in six months.
Earlier this month, sven as core of Al-Qaida has experienced major setbacks in 2012, the United States of America said the terrorist groups survives and continues to threaten the world.
US asserts that the horrific attacks in Pakistan this month that killed more than 100 people reminds the world that the scourge of terrorism remains with us all.
US reports that AQ affiliates and other violent extremist groups pose grave dangers.
Al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula is a significant international threat as well.
Al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb and Al-Shabaab continue to sow instability and exploit safe havens in Mali, the Sahel and the Horn of Africa, destabilizing societies and obstructing the delivery of vital humanitarian relief to millions in need.
In addition, transnational terrorist groups remain active in North Africa, Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Syria and elsewhere.
AQIM, for example, has increasingly used kidnapping for ransom to support its organization and finance terrorist attacks.” – Ms. Rice
United States recognizes that force, while necessary, is not nearly sufficient to counter the threat effectively over the long-term.
The United States has intensified its capacity-building assistance to help countries secure their borders, thwart attacks, prosecute terrorists and those who abet them, and neutralize extremism and its root causes.
In August 2011, with the recent release of “Country Reports on Terrorism 2011” by the US State Department, Counterterrorism Coordinator Daniel Benjamin said al-Qaida affiliates are increasing their overall operational ability in Arabian Peninsula despite suffering losses in 2011.
Besides the death of Usama bin Ladin and a number of other key al-Qaida operatives, millions of citizens throughout the Middle East advance peaceful public demands for change without any reference to al-Qaida’s incendiary world view.
The report’s narrative notes, among other things, the continued weakening of the al-Qaida core in Pakistan, but inncreasing their overall operational ability which is particularly true of al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula.
According to the National Counterterrorism Center, the total number of worldwide attacks in 2011 was more than 10,000 in 70 countries, resulting in more than 12,500 deaths.
In June 2012, Yemeni city of Shuqra fell to government forces when Yemeni troops took control of the city.
Shuqra is the last major stronghold of al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) in Abyan province to fall to government forces.