A top secret memo revealed that the Saudi Kingdom sent death-row inmates, sentenced to execution by decapitation, to Syria to fight against the Syrian government in exchange for commuting their sentences.
According to the memo, written by the Ministry of Interior in Saudi Arabia dated on April 17, 2012, the Saudi Kingdom negotiated with a total of 1239 inmates, offering them a full pardon and a monthly salary for their families in exchange for their training in order to send them to fight in Syria.
The memo was signed by Abdullah bin Ali al-Rmezan, the “Director of follow up in Ministry of Interior”, the Assyrian International News Agency reported.
According to the memo, there have been the nationals of Yemenis, Palestinians, Saudis, Sudanese, Syrians, Jordanians, Somalis, Afghanis, Egyptians, Pakistanis, Iraqis, and Kuwaitis among the inmates.
There have been 23 Iraqi prisoners.
A former member of the Iraqi parliament, speaking on condition of anonymity, confirmed the authenticity of the document and said most of the Iraqi prisoners in Saudi Arabia sent to Syria returned to Iraq and admitted that they had agreed to the deal offered by the Saudi Kingdom, and requested the Iraqi government to petition the Saudi government to release their families, who were being held hostage in Saudi Arabia.
Yemeni nationals who were sent to Syria also returned to Yemen and asked their government to secure the release of their families, according to the former Iraqi MP, who said there are many more documents in this regard.
Initially Saudi Arabia denied the existence of the program. But the testimony of the released prisoners forced the Saudi government to admit, in private circles, its existence.
According to the former Iraqi MP, the Russians threatened to bring this issue to the United Nations if the Saudis continued working against President Bashar al-Assad.
The Saudis agreed to stop their underground activities and work towards finding a political solution on condition that knowledge of this program would not be made public.
Here is the translation of the memo:
This is a document issued by
Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
Ministry of Interior
Follow-up LOGO Number: 71466/J/H
Date: 25/5/1433 H. (April /17/2012 AD)
His Excellency General Suood Al-Thnayyan
The Classified (Secret) Office at the Ministry of Interior May Allah protect him
Peace be upon you and Allah’s mercy and blessings
In reference to the Royal Court telegram No. 112, dated on 04/19/1433 H (March 3, 2012), referring to those held in the Kingdom jails accused with crimes to which Islamic Sharia law of execution by sword (decapitation) applies, we inform you that we are in dialogue with the accused criminals who have been convicted with smuggling drugs, murder, rape, from the following nationalities: 110 Yemenis, 21 Palestinians, 212 Saudis, 96 Sudanese, 254 Syrians, 82 Jordanians, 68 Somalis, 32 Afghanis, 94 Egyptians, 203 Pakistanis, 23 Iraqis, and 44 Kuwaitis.
We have reached an agreement with them that they will be exempted from the death sentence and given a monthly salary to their families and loved ones, who will be prevented from traveling outside Saudi Arabia in return for rehabilitation of the accused and their training in order to send them to Jihad in Syria.
Please accept my greetings.
Director of follow up in Ministry of Interior
Abdullah bin Ali al-Rmezan
Authority of enforcement of the common good and prevention of forbidden
Copy for general intelligence