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17:13, 01 October 2014 Wednesday
Update: 10:54, 06 February 2013 Wednesday

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Secret CIA drone base in Saudi Arabia
Secret CIA drone base in Saudi Arabia

The disclosure of the CIA's Saudi drone base came as the architect of the drone strikes program, John Brennan, prepared to face the Senate Thursday for a confirmation hearing to become CIA director.

World Bulletin / News Desk

Deadly CIA drone strikes into Yemen originated in Saudi Arabia, The Washington Post reported.

The secret base's location, also disclosed by several other U.S. news organizations Tuesday, had been withheld by the organizations for more than a year at the request of senior Obama administration officials, the news organizations said.

But they reported the location after The New York Times reported online the CIA quietly established a drone base in Saudi Arabia two years ago to carry out strikes in Yemen.

That report effectively ended the arrangement among the news organizations, many of which had been aware of the location for more than a year.

The disclosure of the CIA's Saudi drone base came as the architect of the drone strikes program, John Brennan, prepared to face the Senate Thursday for a confirmation hearing to become CIA director.

Brennan has been the principal coordinator of a "kill list". He also has advised President Barack Obama on which strikes he should approve, the Times said.

Individual strikes by Predator and Reaper drones are almost never discussed publicly by Obama administration officials.

The secrecy surrounding the kill list and drone strikes, including those killing Americans, was punctured Monday with the disclosure of a 16-page U.S. Justice Department "white paper" that spells out the administration's case for killing Americans.

The white paper, first reported by NBC News, says Washington can lawfully kill one of its own citizens overseas if "an informed, high-level official" determines the person is a "senior, operational leader" of al-Qaida or one of its affiliates and poses "an imminent threat of violent attack against the United States," provided his capture was not feasible.

The memo can be found at tinyurl.com/justicedeptmemo.



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