US Navy resumes training Saudis after base terror attack

The Pentagon says Wednesday it has resumed training Saudi military pilots two months after a trainee shot dead three Americans at a Florida naval base in what was called an act of terrorism.

The US Navy says it restarted the program at the US Naval Air Station in Pensacola on Tuesday under tighter controls, including an absolute ban on the cadet pilots owning guns.

Royal Saudi Air Force 2nd Lieutenant Mohammed Saeed Alshamrani used a pistol obtained under a legal loophole to kill three sailors and wound eight other people on December 6 in a classroom building. He was shot dead at the scene by law enforcement officers.

Alshamrani had been taking part in a training course that the US offers to hundreds of foreign military officials every year. The Pentagon froze the training of about 850 Saudis, putting into question a decades-old program crucial to the US-Saudi relationship, which involves billions of dollars of military sales to the kingdom.


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