Saudis warned not to join Saudi-funded Syrian revolt

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ABU DHABI — Saudi Arabia, a leading financier of the Sunni revolt,
has warned its nationals against joining the war against Syrian President
Bashar Assad.

The Saudi Interior Ministry said those involved in the war in Syria
would be prosecuted. The ministry said those suspected of traveling to Syria
to join the Sunni rebellion would be blocked at the airport.

Free Syrian Army fighters.  /Reuters/Mohamed Kaddoor/Shaam News Network

Free Syrian Army fighters. /Reuters/Mohamed Kaddoor/Shaam News Network

“Anybody found to be planning to travel to Syria to join the war against
the regime will be investigated and banned from leaving the country,”
Interior Ministry spokesman Maj. Gen. Mansour Al Turki said.

Al Turki acknowledged that Saudis joined the Sunni revolt in Syria. But
the general said he could not estimate the number.

This marked a rare warning by Riyad to Saudis not to fight the Assad
regime. Both the Saudi and foreign media have reported the death of more
than a dozen Saudis as well as the presence of at least 300 fighters in

Al Turki said some of the Saudis recruited to fight in Syria were
involved in other insurgencies. He did not elaborate.

Officials said the Saudis were recruited through the Internet or
personal contacts. They said the Saudis, most of them in the 20s, arrived in
Jordan and eventually slipped over the northern border into Syria.

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