US Halts Military Training For Saudi Students After Shooting

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Training of all Saudi Arabian military personnel in the  United States was stopped until further notice after a Saudi airman shot and killed three people last week at a base in Florida.

The Pentagon’s decision will have far-reaching effects on visiting Saudi personnel, including grounding more than 300 Saudi Arabian military aviation students as part of a “safety stand-down”.

The Pentagon later on Tuesday said the move would also affect infantry personnel and all other Saudi military training, other than classroom lessons. Such coursework, which includes English-language classes, will continue.

Mohammed Alshamrani, a 21-year-old lieutenant in the Saudi Royal Air Force, opened fire in a classroom at Pensacola Naval Air Station in Florida on Friday, killing three American sailors and wounding eight other people before being shot dead by police.

A senior Pentagon official said the move was intended to allow for a broader review of security procedures that would eventually apply to all of some 5,000 international military students in the US.

The safety stand-down only applied to the some 850 visiting students from Saudi Arabia.

The FBI has said it believes Alshamrani acted alone before he was fatally shot by a deputy sheriff.

“I don’t have any evidence to suggest that there is a larger ring or larger conspiracy,” a military official said.

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