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Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri

Al-Qaeda Persian Gulf Operations Chief

Detained

Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri

Details
ImportanceVery High
Location of DetentionU.S. Naval Station Guantanamo Bay, Cuba2
Date of CaptureEarly November 20021
Location of CaptureUnited Arab Emirates1
AffiliationAl-Qaeda
RoleTerrorist Operations Planner
SupervisorOsama bin Laden1
Full Given NameAbdul Rahim Mohammed Hussein Abda Al-Nashiri
NationalitySaudi2
NationalityYemeni2
Alias(es)Umar Mohammed al-Harazi, Abu Bilal al-Makki2, Rahman Hussein al-Saafani, Abu al-Mohsin, Abu al-Hasan, Omar Mohammed al-Harazi, Mullah Bilal1,2, Khalid al-Safani2, Amm Ahmad2
Alias(es)Bilal bin Marwan
Alternate Spelling(s)Abd al-Rahim Hussein Muhammed Abdu, Abd al-Rahim al-Nasheri, Abd al Rahim al Nashiri, Abdelrahim al-Nassir
Date of BirthJan. 5, 19652
Place of BirthMecca, Saudi Arabia2
GenderMale
Charged with(in absentia)
Charging authorityYemen
In connection withUSS Cole bombing
Case statusConvicted
SentenceDeath2
 
 
Narrative and Notes
 
Reliable
  • Al-Nashiri was propelled into al-Qaeda's senior leadership after the success of the USS Cole bombing.
  • He joined his cousins and uncles in militant Islam after completing intermediate school in Saudi Arabia. He took part in Khattab's insurgencies in Tajikstan and Chechnya and became a trainer at Khalden camp in Afghanistan in 1992.
  • Accompanied by Tawfiq bin Attash, he first met bin Laden in the mid-1990s, but al-Nashiri initially refused to pledge loyalty to him because he found the idea distateful.
  • In 1997, he joined the Taliban and later began work for al-Qaeda. He and his cousin Azzam were tasked to smuggle Russian AT-3 Sagger antitank missiles into Saudi Arabia to use against American targets there. The attack did not take place.
  • In late 1998, he was tasked by bin Laden to attack an oil tanker off the coast of Yemen. This plot was modified in 1999 to a U.S. Navy warship. Nashiri's operatives failed on their first attempt when an overloaded bomb boat sank in January 2000, but the Cole attack 10 months later succeeded.
  • His cousin Azzam was the suicide bomber at the U.S. Embassy in Nairobi, Kenya, in 1998.
  • An associate described him as utterly committed to al-Qaeda, suggesting he "would commit a terrorist act 'in Mecca inside the Ka'aba itself' (the holiest site on Islam) if he believed there was a need to do so."
  • At the time of Nashiri's arrest, he was involved in a number of plots, including one to crash a small plane into the bridge of a U.S. or allied warship in the United Arab Emirates.
  • He was one of 14 key al-Qaeda operatives and associates transferred from CIA custody to the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, in 2006.1,2,3
  •  
     
    Sources
    1 The 9-11 Commission Final Report. July 22, 2004, Chapter 5.1.
    2 'Detainee Biographies,' press release, Director of National Intelligence, Sept. 6, 2006.
    3 The 9-11 Commission Final Report. July 22, 2004, Footnotes.
    Photo: Globalsecurity.org archive
     
     
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