7/7 'Could Have Been Averted' Says Saudi King



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Royal visitor points to info he sent warning of attacks

7/7 'Could Have Been Averted' Says Saudi King

THE LONDON BOMBS of two years ago which claimed 52 lives, could have been avoided, says King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia.

"We sent information to Great Britain before the terrorist attacks, but unfortunately no action was taken," said the King, who arrived in London day for an official visit. "And it may have been able to maybe avert the tragedy."

The King has made similar allegations before, but investigations by British MPs into the events leading up to 7/7 could find no evidence of the information sent by Saudi Arabia.

King Abdullah also thinks countries other than his own, "including Britain", are slipping up in a more general sense on their efforts to combat al-Qaida.

That might seem rich coming from the leader of a country that has supplied many of the terrorists operating in Iraq, but it is an opinion likely to be treated with respect by most British politicians given the importance of Saudi Arabia in terms of oil.

One of those refusing to play the diplomatic game is acting Liberal Democrat leader Vince Cable, who plans to boycott the King's visit over the issue of the lack of human rights in Saudi Arabia.

Backbench Labour MP John McDonnell is of a like mind and aims to make his point as part of a mass demo outside the Saudi embassy on Wednesday.

"Why is it that in the same breath the prime minister condemns the lack of democracy in Burma and the abuse of human rights in Zimbabwe but remains silent when it comes to the Saudi dictatorship?" asked McDonnell.




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