Saudis ‘chief supporters’ of extremism, leaked cables show

By Reuters
Sunday, December 5, 2010 11:42 EDT
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WASHINGTON — Top U.S. officials have grown frustrated over the resistance of allies in the Middle East to help shut the financial pipeline of terrorists, the New York Times reported on Sunday, citing secret diplomatic dispatches.

Internal State Department cables, obtained by WikiLeaks and made available to news organizations, indicate that millions of dollars are flowing to extremist groups, including al Qaeda and the Taliban, despite U.S. vows to cut off such funding.

A classified memo sent by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton last December made it clear that residents of Saudi Arabia and its neighbors were the chief supporters of many extremist activities, the newspaper said.

“It has been an ongoing challenge to persuade Saudi officials to treat terrorist financing emanating from Saudi Arabia as a strategic priority,” according to the cable cited by the newspaper.


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