The Federal Bureau of Investigation has released the first document on the 9/11 attacks declassified as part of a recent executive order by U.S. President Joe Biden.
A significant number of fragments were removed from the released FBI material. The redacted document refers, in particular, to a former employee of the Saudi consulate in Los Angeles, who was interrogated in 2015 "to clarify the circumstances of his contact with individuals who provided significant logistical support to the 9/11 hijackers." According to experts, the document was published under pressure from the U.S. public, but it does not reveal the circumstances of the tragedy.
"This material is published in accordance with a decree signed on September 3, 2021, to analyze certain documents related to the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, for their subsequent declassification," the agency's explanatory note notes.
It is worth noting that many fragments were removed from the original text of the 16-page document, dated 2016, before publication.
The declassified FBI material refers to an individual whom U.S. investigators interviewed on November 12 and 13, 2015, "in connection with his pending request for U.S. citizenship and to ascertain the circumstances of his contact with individuals who provided significant logistical support to the 9/11 hijackers Nawaf al-Hazmi (Hazmi) and Khalid al-Midhar (Midhar)."
The source, whose name was also kept confidential, reportedly "willingly provided many specific details" about his work at the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia's consulate in Los Angeles. In addition, he said he remembered perfectly well the minute details of a meeting with Omar al-Bayoumi, a citizen of the kingdom who helped the two hijackers rent an apartment, and Bin Don, Bayoumi's friend.
According to the FBI, the source repeatedly stated that he did not discuss the events of 9/11 at the King Fahd Mosque in California or at the consulate. However, he was unable to explain why claims that no one he knew discussed the events of 9/11 on the mosque grounds after the attacks "directly contradict what the sources reported."
The declassified material reports that U.S. investigators were trying to determine whether the meeting in which Bayoumi, Bin Don, Midhar and Hazmi participated had been planned in advance, or whether it occurred, as Bayoumi said, "by accident."
"The logistical support for Hazmi and Midhar by Bayoumi involved translation, travel assistance, lodging, and funding issues," the document specifies. In addition, it is noted that Bayoumi often spoke of "jihad."
The report also mentions Fahad al-Tumairi, who was an employee of the Saudi embassy in the U.S.
It is reported that Tumayri's involvement in a "network in Los Angeles" linked to "al-Qaida-related elements ", "seems relevant to the analysis of his subsequent facilitation of a meeting between the hijackers involved in the 9/11 attacks and Bayoumi."