More than 20 Saudi cadets deported from US

More than 20 Saudi cadets deported from US
2 min read
13 January, 2020
The US has ordered out of the country over 20 Saudi students.
Saudi students have been deported from the US [Getty]
More than 20 Saudi military students have been ordered out of the US, media reported late Sunday, in the wake of massacre at an American navy base by a student from the kingdom.

The new number follows an earlier figure of 12 students, who have been receiving military training in the US, would be deported.

Military sources told NPR that this figure did not include cadets at the Naval Air Station Pensacola.

Those being removed from the country had been done so for a number of reasons, from being involved in speaking in extremist chat rooms and child pornography.

Saudi cadet, Mohammed Alshamrani, who was in the US as part of a Saudi military training programme, opened fire on students at the Pensacola Naval Air Station, killing three sailors and wounding eight others.

The massacre launched an investigation into possible collaboration or extremist views of other Saudi students in the US.

The probe, which was carried out by the FBI, also found that several had not reported the assailant's disturbing behaviour before the attack, according to The Washington Post.

In mid-December the Pentagon said it had conducted background checks on all Saudi military personnel currently training in the US and found no "immediate threat scenario".

Defence Department officials halted operational training for Saudi Arabian military students in the United States following the attack, though classroom instruction continued.

The 21-year-old gunman, a lieutenant in the Saudi Royal Air Force, was armed with a lawfully purchased Glock 9mm handgun, and is reported to have posted a manifesto on Twitter before the shooting denouncing America as "a nation of evil".

According to The Washington Post, the FBI asked Apple to help access Alshamrani's two iPhones, but the company is resisting governmental requests to alter encryption.

Apple said it had already helped the agency by sharing related data in its cloud storage.

Some 5,000 international military personnel are undergoing training in the United States, including approximately 850 Saudis among all branches.

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