Seventh terrorist surrenders: Al-Shihri, on the list of 85, returned from Pakistan

JEDDAH: One of Saudi Arabia’s most wanted terrorists has given himself up to security forces, the Ministry of Interior has said.Badr Muhammad Nasser Al-Shihri, who features on a list of 85 most wanted criminals, turned himself in after flying back to Saudi Arabia from Pakistan, ministry spokesman Maj. Gen. Mansour Al-Turki announced on Tuesday.The official added that Al-Shihri told his family that he wanted to come back to the Kingdom and asked them to facilitate his return. Al-Turki said Al-Shihri returned after the ministry liaised with security forces in Pakistan. He met with his family and performed Umrah with them after his return.The Interior Ministry asks all Saudi terrorists living outside to return to their country and turn themselves in, especially after it has become clear that they were misled by others,” he told the Saudi Press Agency.Al-Turki said the fact that Al-Shihri gave himself up would be taken into consideration. Al-Shihri is one of 85 wanted terrorists — 84 Saudis and one Yemeni — whose names were announced and communicated to Interpol in February 2009. They are accused of belonging to Al-Qaeda.Since then, six of them have been killed, two arrested and six others surrendered. Al-Shihri was the seventh terrorist who opted to surrender to Saudi authorities.Askar Al-Askar, a researcher in intelligence studies, terrorism and extremism, told Arab News that the voluntary surrender of wanted terrorists shows that they realized they were on a wrong path.

It also indicates that Saudi security forces are taking correct measures in tackling extremism.“The Saudi security forces were able to disconnect terrorists from their commanders,” he said adding that these extremists have regained individual thought.Al-Askar said terrorists who opted to turn themselves in were aware of the good treatment they would receive in return.“They know very well that they will be treated according to tolerant Shariah teachings and the fact they turned themselves in will be taken into consideration when their cases are considered,” he said.Al-Askar noted that interfaith dialogue programs initiated by Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah have borne fruit.“The terrorists have at last realized that Islam is moderate and that their leaders were deviant, corrupt and liars,” he said. – Arabnews