California killers ‘did not meet in Kingdom’

Tashfeen Malik, left, and Syed Farook.

Tashfeen Malik, left, and Syed Farook.

The perpetrators of the recent mass shootings in San Bernardino, California, did not meet in the Kingdom, a Saudi source told Asharq Al-Awsat.

“Saudi Arabia receives hundreds of pilgrims who are American citizens yearly, and they return to the US without being radicalized or harmed ideologically,” the source pointed out.

This statement came as a refutation of allegations spread by US media that Syed Farook, 28, an American citizen of Pakistani origin, became radicalized after marrying Tashfeen Malik, 27, “in Saudi Arabia last year”.

The source also said that Farook visited Saudi Arabia to perform Umrah in July 2014, and then left Jeddah. According to the source, Farook did not meet Tashfeen Malik in Saudi Arabia.

The source added that “Tashfeen Malik was not in Saudi Arabia at the time when Farook was there to perform Umrah”.

Pakistani officials said that Tashfeen Malik returned to the Layyah District in the province of Punjab, Pakistan where she lived in order to study Pharmacy at the University of Bahauddin Zakariya in Multan.

Meanwhile, a news agency that supports Daesh called “Amaaq” stated on its website that two members of Daesh carried out the attacks at the social services centre in California.

CNN quoted US officials as saying earlier that investigators believe Tashfeen Malik had pledged allegiance to Daesh terrrist Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi and that she had posted this on a Facebook page under a different name.

According to US media, security officials said that the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is dealing with the incident as a possible terrorist attack.

However, it is not confirmed whether the incident was a terrorist operation while the motives for the killings are still unknown.


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