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Cablegate: Bahrain: Country Report On Terrorism 2009

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PP RUEHWEB

DE RUEHMK #0740 3630902
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 290902Z DEC 09
FM AMEMBASSY MANAMA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 9131
INFO RHBVAKS/COMUSNAVCENT
RHMFIUU/HQ USCENTCOM MACDILL AFB FL

UNCLAS MANAMA 000740

SIPDIS
SENSITIVE

STATE FOR S/CT

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PTER ASEC PGOV BA
SUBJECT: BAHRAIN: COUNTRY REPORT ON TERRORISM 2009

REF: STATE 109980

1. (SBU) Post's submission for this year's Country Report on
Terrorism follows below.

2.(SBU) In 2009, the Government of Bahrain monitored suspected international terrorist facilitators in Bahrain. GOB law enforcement succeeded in jailing a man suspected of providing financial support of terrorism. The GOB also foiled an alleged attack plot that was in the early stages of planning. In addition, Bahraini security services have worked closely and cooperatively with international partners.

3.(SBU) Finance: Adel Saleh, a Bahraini citizen arrested in June 2008 was convicted February 4, 2009 on charges of maintaining links to al-Qa'ida and financing terrorism. According to testimony offered during his trial, Saleh traveled to Iran three times to deliver 50,500 euros to al-Qa'ida operatives. He received a one-year sentence with credit for time served since his arrest. Prosecutors appealed, seeking a longer sentence, but the appeal process ended when Saleh, along with 177 other prisoners and detainees, was pardoned by King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa on April 11. Two other defendants in the same case who were tried in absentia were convicted on similar charges and sentenced to five years' imprisonment. They were not pardoned.

4.(SBU) Foiled Attack: Security forces monitored the activities of two Bahraini citizens and arrested them on April 26. During the arrest, the authorities discovered automatic weapons, ammunition, a pistol, hunting knives, and a sword, along with evidence indicating the accused were in the early stages of planning an attack against U.S. Navy interests. Prosecutors charged the men, one of whom was an employee of the Ministry of Interior Customs Directorate, with joining an international terrorist organization, plotting attacks in Bahrain and elsewhere in the Gulf, and various weapons charges. Their trial began on June 30 and continued at year's end.

5.(SBU) On December 16, Bahrain deployed a company of Special Security Forces to southern Afghanistan in support of Coalition operations in Helmand province.

6.(SBU) Bahrain continued its cooperation with U.S. authorities on counterterrorist finance. Its Financial Information Unit (FIU) resides in the Central Bank of Bahrain (CBB). The CBB, FIU, and local banks worked cooperatively on counterterrorist finance and anti-money laundering issues. The government is working with the U.S. Department of the Treasury to host a conference on the regulation of Islamic charities in early 2010. Bahrain also hosts the Middle East and North Africa Financial Action Task Force secretariat, and has cooperated actively with the Global Initiative to Combat Nuclear Terrorism since formally endorsing the initiative in March 2008. ERELI

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