Cover Story Overview

AQAP’s Growing Security Threat to Saudi Arabia

In March 2010, a Saudi security sweep netted 113 alleged al-Qa`ida in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) sympathizers. Among them was Hayla al-Qusayir, an AQAP operative held in high esteem by her fellow militants due to her knowledge of Islam, enthusiasm for fighting Saudi security forces, and for allegedly sending more than $293,000 to AQAP. This article examines AQAP’s growing threat to Saudi Arabia. It first explains the importance of Hayla al-Qusayir’s arrest before reviewing how the Saudi government has responded to the al-Qa`ida challenge.

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