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SITE Publications
Breaking News - Saudi security forces captured Faris Shuwayl al-Zahrani
By SITE Institute
Published in: Al-Wifaq
August 5, 2004

The Saudi paper, Al-Wifaq, reported at 10:30 pm (Saudi time) that Saudi security forces captured Faris Shuwayl al-Zahrani, one Saudi Arabia's 26 most wanted terrorists. According to the paper, Zahrani was captured in the mountains of the Asir area in Saudi Arabia. The SITE Institute prepared a factsheet on all 26 most wanted terrorists. Below is the information SITE provided on al-Zahrani.

Faris Ahmed Jamaan Al-Showeel Al-Zahrani

(Online Aliases: Munafih, Mutaharrik)

Nationality: Saudi
Age: 27
Status: Allegedly Captured


Al-Zahrani is one of al-Qaeda?s top religious and most dangerous ideologues. Zahrani published a book that justifies the killing of Saudi police officers. Al-Zahrani was schooled in the Al-Bahah area of Zahran, and subsequently he attended the Imam Muhammad Bin Saud University in Abha for one semester, where he studied Sharia and Principles of Religion, but eventually was expelled after he failed to attend classes. Still, he became an imam at a mosque in Abha. He married young and lived in the mosque in Abha, eventually moving to the Al-Qusaym area. Al-Zahrani defrauded a clergyman in Usayr, where he borrowed 500,000 riyals from the clergyman to invest in a food warehouse in Jeddah, but was never seen again to repay the money. Al-Zahrani is also believed to be propagating and disseminating al-Qaeda?s ideology on the web, posting regularly to Jihadist message boards using the online aliases, ?Munafih? and ?Mutaharrik?. On June 18, 2004, according to reports, Zahrani may have been wounded in the leg and then captured by Saudi security forces in Riyadh in the same shootout in which al-Qaeda leader Abdel-Aziz Al-Muqrin was killed. There were rumors of his intent to surrender to the Saudi authorities, but he issued a voice message denying them.

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