Malaysia releases Bin Laden's anthrax scientist

Malaysia releases scientist who tried to build biological weapons for Bin Laden
2 min read
21 November, 2019
A scientist who was previously jailed for trying to develop weapons of mass destruction has been released after reportedly 'repenting' for his actions.
Yazid Sufaat developed chemical weapons for al-Qaeda in Afghanistan [Facebook]
A Malaysian scientist who tried to develop anthrax weapons for Osama bin Laden was released by authorities on Wednesday after serving his latest prison term.

Yazid Sufaat, who was put back in jail in 2017 for recruiting for Al-Qaeda, was released following a decision by Malaysia's Prevention of Terrorism Board.

"Yazid Sufaat was released this morning from the Simpang Renggam prison in Johor and sent back to his home in Kuala Lumpur," the head of the Malaysian police's Special Branch counter-terrorism division, Ayob Khan Mydin Pitchay, said on Wednesday.

Ayob added that he will have to wear an electronic tracking device at all times.

"He is only allowed to be in the vicinity of his home in Ampang [district] and must be inside his home from 8pm to 6am every day," Ayob said.

Yazid, 55, has served a string of prison sentences for his involvement with Al-Qaeda and more recently the Islamic State group.

The former army captain was first jailed in 2002 for attempting to develop chemical weapons for al-Qaeda's slain leader in Kandahar, Afghanistan.

Read also: Trump confirms death of Al-Qaeda heir Hamza bin Laden

He also hosted senior Al-Qaeda operatives at his home in Malaysia's capital, Kuala Lumpur. At one meeting, plans for the September 11 attack on New York's Twin Towers were discussed, making Yazid the only Malaysian citizen with links to the 9/11 attacks.

Yazid, who has spent almost two decades in detention, has been described by Ayob as "the most challenging militant" that Malaysia has attempted to deradicalise so far.

According to an intelligence source cited by Singapore's Straits Times, however, Yazid now appears to have "repented" for his terror activities.

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