FBI thinks Saudi shooter acted alone, Florida governor decries 'deep … – Reuters España

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PENSACOLA, Fla. (Reuters) – Investigators consider a Saudi Air Pressure lieutenant acted alone when he killed three individuals and wounded eight at a U.S. Navy base in Pensacola, Florida, earlier than being fatally shot by a deputy sheriff, the FBI mentioned on Sunday.
However they’ve but to find out a motive for the rampage, although fellow Saudi college students on the base who had been near the shooter are cooperating with investigators, mentioned Rachel Rojas, particular agent in command of the FBI’s Jacksonville workplace and lead investigator on the case.
Rojas mentioned the FBI was working, because it does in most mass shootings, on the presumption that it was an act of terrorism, however she burdened that was largely to permit investigators to make use of particular instruments afforded to them in terrorism instances.
“We’re trying very exhausting at uncovering his motive and I might ask for persistence so we are able to get this proper,” she mentioned, including that 80 FBI particular brokers, 100 help workers and scores of different investigators from the Navy and a number of federal companies had been working the case.
The FBI recognized the shooter as Second Lieutenant Mohammed Saeed Alshamrani, 21, and mentioned he opened fireplace inside a classroom on the base early on Friday morning.
Rojas mentioned the pistol he used – a Glock 9mm handgun that may be paired with {a magazine} holding 33 rounds – was legally bought by the shooter someplace in Florida. In line with U.S. rules, it’s authorized for a foreigner in the US on a nonimmigrant visa to purchase a gun if sure circumstances are met – together with in the event that they merely have a searching license.
Alshamrani was on the bottom as a part of a U.S. Navy coaching program designed to foster hyperlinks with international allies. He had began coaching in the US in 2017 and had been within the Pensacola space for the previous 18 months, authorities mentioned.
His fellow Saudi college students had been talking instantly with American investigators and had been restricted to the bottom on order of the Saudi army, Rojas mentioned.
“I thank the dominion for his or her pledge of full and full cooperation,” she added.
U.S. President Donald Trump mentioned on Saturday that King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman had been “devastated” by what came about and pledged to assist households of the victims.
The Saudi crown prince referred to as Trump on Sunday to guarantee him Saudi authorities would provide their absolute cooperation with the US and supply all data that will assist the investigations, the Saudi state information company reported.
However members of Congress representing Florida have blasted the U.S. authorities for not already labeling the capturing as a terrorist assault and have demanded extra particulars about what the Saudi authorities is doing to assist the investigation and stop future violence by members of its army.
The assault comes because the Trump administration has maintained heat ties with Riyadh amid Saudi involvement within the struggle in Yemen, excessive tensions with Center East rival Iran, and continued political fallout from the killing of Washington Put up journalist Jamal Khashoggi final 12 months at a Saudi consulate in Turkey.
A gaggle that tracks on-line extremism has mentioned Alshamrani appeared to have posted criticism of U.S. wars in predominantly Muslim international locations and quoted slain al Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden on Twitter hours earlier than the capturing spree.
In English, he additionally wrote that he hated the American individuals for “committing crimes not solely towards Muslims but in addition humanity,” and he criticized Washington’s help for Israel, in keeping with evaluation by the SITE Intelligence Group.
Reuters has not verified the authenticity of the account, @M&MD_SHAMRANI, which was suspended by Twitter on Friday.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, talking at a Sunday afternoon press convention, answered “sure, sure” when requested if he thought-about the capturing an act of terrorism.
“There may be plenty of frustration in our state over this,” DeSantis mentioned. “You’ve international army personnel coming to our base. They shouldn’t be doing that in the event that they hate our nation.”
DeSantis mentioned Alshamrani took benefit of a “federal loophole” to purchase the gun he used, and he confirmed that the suspect, since arriving in the US in 2017, made a return journey to Saudi Arabia and likewise lately visited New York. The governor declined to offer additional particulars.
“He had a deep-seated hatred for the US,” DeSantis mentioned. “For us to be bringing in these international nationals, you must take precautions. Bringing in individuals from Saudi Arabia – we have to be on guard towards that.”
Alshamrani was considered one of about 200 foreigners on the Pensacola base and hundreds round the US who take part in army coaching, a program that U.S. Protection Secretary Mark Esper mentioned was “crucial to our nationwide safety.”
Esper instructed “Fox Information Sunday” that he had requested high protection officers to ensure all essential precautions had been taken to make sure security at army installations, and that he requested the Pentagon to evaluation screening procedures for army personnel from different international locations coming to the US for coaching.
These personnel had been already screened by the departments of State, Protection and Homeland Safety, Esper mentioned.
Reporting by Brad Brooks; Writing by Daniel Trotta; Modifying by Daniel Wallis
Our Requirements: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
All quotes delayed a minimal of quarter-hour. See here for a complete list of exchanges and delays.



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