AL-ASYAH/RIYADH: Abdullah Al-Sayil, the Saudi terrorist killed after gunning down two border guards in Al-Wadi’a, Najran, earlier this week, had only months earlier been released upon completion of a seven-year prison term for involvement in terrorist activities.
A brother of Al-Sayil is currently in prison “on similar charges”, according to relatives.
Relatives of Al-Sayil told Okaz/Saudi Gazette that after his release he returned to live with his mother and sister in the Al-Adiya district to the west of Al-Asyah, 65km north of Buraidah.
They said he got married four months ago only to divorce soon after. Relatives had no news of him for 20 days before his death in the security clash. “It was said he’d gone to Madina on business,” one relative said.
Al-Sayil’s father died a long time ago, relatives said, while his “elderly mother” is reportedly “in shock” at hearing of her son’s death and the circumstances in which it occurred.
“It was made all the worse by the fact that he’d recently returned to live with her after seven years in prison,” one said. “He had always been a loner before he was arrested.”
According to the Ministry of Interior, Al-Sayil was convicted of setting up militant training camps, supplying arms and personnel to “troubled regions” and involvement in acts of combat.
Al-Sayil was killed in a shootout with Saudi guards on the border with Yemen. Forensic tests later determined that the firearm in his possession was the same weapon used to attack two security patrols in Buraidah on May 27, 2011, killing one official and injuring another.
He was first detained on Feb. 17, 2004, and after he was convicted he was enrolled in a program to study Islamic behavior based on the Holy Qur’an and the Prophet’s Traditions (Sunnah). Upon his release, his family pledged to the authorities that they would watch over him.
On Wednesday, Prince Ahmad Bin Abdul Aziz, Deputy Minister of Interior, said that Al-Sayil had “been given his chance”.
“He had been a deviant, but he went back to his deviancy,” Prince Ahmad said at a graduation ceremony for students at the Higher Institute of Security Studies in Riyadh Wednesday.
“He was given a chance and was offered guidance and advice, but he went back to his old deviant ways,” the Prince said.
– Okaz/Saudi Gazette