Saudi Arabia’s King Salman telephoned US President Donald Trump over US Naval Base shooting by Saudi soldier
ISLAMABAD - Saudi Arabia’s King Salman telephoned US President Donald Trump to denounce the US Naval base shooting after media reports suggested the attacker was a Saudi military student.
King Salman affirmed that “the perpetrator of this heinous crime does not represent the Saudi people,” according to the official Saudi Press Agency.
Saudi Arabia has long been a major US ally in the Middle East, thanks primarily to security considerations and oil.
Trump said King Salman “called to express his sincere condolences and give his sympathies to the families and friends of the warriors who were killed and wounded in the attack that took place in Pensacola, Florida.”
A Saudi military student reportedly condemned America as a “nation of evil” in an online manifesto prior to opening fire Friday at the US naval base, killing three people before being shot dead by police.
The shooting, which took place in a classroom building at Naval Air Station Pensacola in Florida, left eight others wounded, including two sheriff’s deputies who responded to the attack.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis said the shooter was from Saudi Arabia — the same nationality as 15 of the 19 men involved in the 9/11 attacks, some of whom attended civilian flight school in Florida.
The SITE Intelligence Group, which monitors militant media, identified him as Mohammed al-Shamrani, saying he had posted a short manifesto on Twitter that read: “I’m against evil, and America as a whole has turned into a nation of evil.”
“I’m not against you for just being American, I don’t hate you because your freedoms, I hate you because every day you supporting, funding and committing crimes against humanity,” he wrote.
ABC News reported that investigators were working to determine if it was in fact written by the shooter.
The Twitter account that posted the manifesto has been suspended.