Tribal leader: Saudi hostage in Shabwa
In a press statement by the KSA Interior Ministry, the official spokesman Major General Mansour Al-Turki, revealed that the Saudi embassy in Sana’a had received a phone call from Mashal Mohammed Rashid Al-Shadokhi, a fugitive that numbers 77 on a list of the 85 most wanted men by the Saudi regime.
Al-Shadokhi fled to Yemen in 2009 after the wings of Al-Qaeda in Saudi Arabia and Yemen announced their integration under the name of Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP).
The fugitive informed the embassy that Al-Khaledi was being held by Al-Qaeda and relayed the terror network’s conditions and demands for releasing him, noting that “the diplomat is in good health.”
Al-Qaeda demanded that all detained members of Al-Qaeda in the kingdom’s jails, including female members of the organization, be released and moved to Yemen, and that a ransom payment to be named later be paid, the Saudi ministry noted.
Al-Shadokhi mentioned six female prisoners on charges of being linked to Al-Qaeda by name, including Heyla Al-Qassir, Najwa Al-Saedi, Arwa Al-Baghdadi, Hanan Al-Samkri, Najla Al-Roomi, and Hayfa Al-Ahmadi. Al-Qassir was sentenced to 15 years in prison on Oct. 29, 2011 by the Special Penal Court in Riyadh.
Turki noted that the terrorists warned that Al-Khaledi will be killed if their conditions and demands are not met by the kingdom.
“Today they kidnapped a diplomat, tomorrow they will blowup an embassy and later they might kill a prince,” Turki said.
He added that such demands by Al-Qaeda are “acts of sabotage in this world.”
“The kingdom will not enter into any negotiations or bargain with Al-Qaeda,” the London based Al-Hayat Newspaper quoted the Saudi Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs, Prince Khaled bin Saud on Tuesday.
“We will exert all efforts to release Al-Khaledi,” Saud said.
A tribal leader in the southern Yemeni governorate of Shabwa, Sheikh Ali Abdsalam, told the local newsyemen website on Tuesday that Al-Khaledi is being held as a hostage by Al-Qaeda in Shabwa.
The tribal leader declined to give any further information other than saying, “The whole governorate is under the militant group’s control except for Ataq, the capital of Shabwa.”
Ansar Al-Shariah, a group affiliated to Al-Qaeda took control of Azzan, a city in Shabwa in early June 2011. The group also took control over the whole of Rudum district in Shabwa on March 23.
The Saudi embassy in Sana’a was shut down on Tuesday, a day after the consulate was closed in Aden. Yemenis trying to finish visa paperwork are dismayed by the closure of the embassy. The closures demonstrate the anger in KSA over the abduction of its deputy consul.
Similarly, the health of a Swiss language teacher, who was reportedly kidnapped last month by Al-Qaeda militants in the impoverished port city of Hodeida, has worsened, a local source told newsyemen.
The abduction of foreigners and Yemeni citizens has increased recently by both tribesmen and armed Islamists to pressure the government into releasing prisoners or paying huge ransoms.