June 23, 2003

NOW THIS IS INTERESTING:

Saad al-Faqih, head of the London-based Movement for Islamic Reform in Arabia and critic of the Saudi royal family, was admitted to hospital on Sunday with a leg wound, a Scotland Yard spokesman said.

Mr al-Faqih told the BBC that two men claiming to be plumbers knocked on his door and then forced their way into his home.

He said he had received recent warnings of a plan to abduct or kill him.

The BBC is spelling his name differently, for some reason, but he’s been in the press previously as Saad Al Fagih and he’s a “Saudi dissident” in the same way that Osama bin Laden is a Saudi “dissident” — seemingly exactly the same way, as this story from last year indicates:

Osama Bin Laden, the world’s most wanted man, has connections to a leading Saudi dissident based in London, BBC Radio’s Five Live Report has revealed.

The programme provides evidence that Saad Al-Fagih, a key figure in the London-based campaign opposed to the Saudi regime, bought a satellite phone that was later used by Osama Bin Laden’s al-Qaeda organisation.

On 30 July 1998 one of the suicide bombers who blew up the US embassy in Nairobi telephoned the satellite phone number: 00 873 682 505 331.

Eight days later the suicide bombers struck in Nairobi and Dar-es-Salaam killing 247 people.

The satellite phone was the very same one that had been bought by Saad Al-Fagih in November 1996.

So who was behind this attack? Was it real, or staged? I don’t know, but stay tuned. A British reader suggests a connection with this arrest in London, but I have no idea whether that’s the case. It does seem, however, as if things continue to be active on the Al Qaeda “Saudi dissident” front.