According to a report in the New York Post, FBI evidence suggests that he Saudi Government paid two nationals to pose as students and come to the US to fly from Phoenix to Washington DC in an attempted “dry run” attack on a plane in 1999.
“We’ve long asserted that there were longstanding and close relationships between al Qaeda and the religious components of the Saudi government,’ said Sean Carter, lead attorney for the 9/11 plaintiffs who are suing the Saudi government.
According to court documents obtained by The Post, there was a “pattern of both financial and operational support” from the Saudi government that aided the nationals, Mohammed al-Qudhaeein and Hamdan al-Shalaw, in 1999.
The FBI revealed that Qudhaeein was employed at the Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Islamic Affairs, while Shalawi was “a longtime employee of the Saudi government.”
During what is being termed a “test run,” both men tried multiple times to gain access to the cockpit of an America West flight to Washington, the FBI case file states.
The Bureau’s further revealed that “after they boarded the plane in Phoenix, they began asking the flight attendants technical questions about the flight that the flight attendants found suspicious. And when the plane was in flight, al-Qudhaeein asked where the bathroom was; one of the flight attendants pointed him to the back of the plane,” the file continues. “Nevertheless, al-Qudhaeein went to the front of the plane and attempted on two occasions to enter the cockpit.”
The situation was so dangerous that the pilot of the plane was forced to make an emergency landing in Ohio where the two men were taken into custody but later released by the FBI.
You can read the entire report here.