Syria 'planned to bomb Haj' in 2012
Syria had planned to explode a bomb during the Haj (pilgrimage) season in 2012, a former military officer has said.
Imad Al Haraki, a Syrian officer who worked for the Syrian consulate in the Red Sea resort of Jeddah, told the London-based Al Hayat daily that he had been selected by the Syrian government to carry out the act of terrorism.
He said that he was asked to carry out the attack on the ninth day of Dhul Hijja when around three million people gathered at the Arafat Mount, the peak of the pilgrimage rituals, Gulf News reports.
The former deputy General Consul, Shawqi Shamat, conveyed the mission orders to him, he said.
He told the daily that he was vacationing in Thailand with his family when he received a call from the deputy Consul telling that he was to carry out an operation in the sacred city of Makkah, but did not specify the location.
He added that he was told that he would lead a lavish life after the blast in Syria.