A long-classified U.S. report released Friday found that some of the 9/11 hijackers were in contact with and received support from individuals likely connected to the Saudi government.
Known as the “28 pages,” the secret document was part of a 2002 Congressional Joint Inquiry into the Sept. 11 attacks and has been classified since the report’s completion, despite repeated calls for its release. The document, which the administration finally delivered to Congress earlier Friday, actually contains 29 pages of material plus a letter from then-CIA Director George Tenet.
“While in the United States, some of the September 11 hijackers were in contact with, and received support or assistance from, individuals who may be connected to the Saudi Government,” the document says.
The pages also say that the inquiry obtained information “indicating that Saudi Government officials in the United States may have other ties to al-Qa’ida and other terrorist groups,” but the commission that authored them acknowledged that much of the info “remains speculative and yet to be independently verified.”
Saudi Ambassador to the United States Abdullah Al-Saud put out a statement after the document’s release Friday welcoming its publication, though he didn’t address the details it contains.
“Several government agencies, including the CIA and the FBI, have investigated the contents of the ’28 Pages’ and have confirmed that neither the Saudi government, nor senior Saudi officials, nor any person acting on behalf of the Saudi government provided any support or encouragement for these attacks,” he said. “We hope the release of these pages will clear up, once and for all, any lingering questions or suspicions about Saudi Arabia’s actions, intentions, or long-term friendship with the United States.”
“It should be clear that this Joint Inquiry has made no final determinations as to the reliability or sufficiency of the information,” the report says.