Bush: Saudi Arabia still US ally

The US president says Riyadh is co-operating with efforts to combat terrorism.

    Al-Faisal dismissed official US criticism on the kingdom's record on combating terrorism [AFP]

    Stuart Levey, the US Treasury under-secretary for terrorism and financial intelligence, said that Saudi Arabia had failed to prosecute the financiers of so-called terror groups.

    Levey also claims that not a single individual identified by the United States or the UN as a terror financier had been prosecuted by Saudi Arabia.

    He said: "If I could somehow snap my fingers and cut off the funding from one country, it would be Saudi Arabia."

    Saud al-Faisal, the Saudi foreign minister, dismissed the criticism, saying Levey's public criticism was at odds with private praise from US officials.

    'Religious concerns'

    The US Commission on International Religious Freedom, asked Rice to close the Islamic Saudi Academy (ISA), in Northern Virginia, unless it could prove it was not teaching religious intolerance.

    Members of the commission, appointed by Bush and congress leaders, had cited in a report "significant concerns" over teachings at the ISA, which it said could "adversely" affect US interests.

    The commission also complained about Saudi Arabia's "exportation of extremist ideology and intolerance in education material" and wanted the school closed until the textbooks the school used were made available for "comprehensive public examination".

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    How different voting systems work around the world

    How different voting systems work around the world

    Nearly two billion voters in 52 countries around the world will head to the polls this year to elect their leaders.

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    Russian-Saudi relations could be very different today, if Stalin hadn't killed the Soviet ambassador to Saudi Arabia.

    The great plunder: Nepal's stolen treasures

    The great plunder: Nepal's stolen treasures

    How the art world's hunger for ancient artefacts is destroying a centuries-old culture. A journey across the Himalayas.