The Golden Chain

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The "Golden Chain" is a list of names that was seized in March 2002 in a raid by Bosnian police of the premises of the Benevolence International Foundation in Sarajevo. The Golden Chain has been interpreted by some as a list of purported sponsors of Al-Qaeda.

The list includes at least 20 top Saudi and Gulf States financial sponsors including bankers, businessmen, and former ministers. Part of the list includes a computer file titled "Tarekh Osama" or "Osama History", but the appellation "Golden Chain" itself is due to al Qaeda defector Jamal al-Fadl, who vouched for its authenticity.

Most accounts are vague on what year the Golden Chain document was written; some say 1988[1] but U.S. counter-terrorism advisor Richard A. Clarke says it dates from 1989. The "Golden Chain" was presented by the U.S. government in the criminal case United States v. Arnaout filed on January 29, 2003, and in other legal filings, which would cause its veracity and meaning to be brought under further scrutiny.

List of Names[edit]

The names include:

Adel Batterjee[edit]

Adel Batterjee is a wealthy Saudi businessman who is also the founder of both BIF and its predecessor, Lajnatt Al-Birr Al-Islamiah. He appears to be mentioned three times.[2]

"The Bin Laden Brothers"[edit]

Their first names are not mentioned.

Suleiman al-Rasheed[edit]

Al-Rasheed Trading & Contracting (Riyadh, Saudi Arabia)

Saleh Abdullah Kamel[edit]

Born in 1941, Mecca, Saudi Arabia, Saleh Abdullah Kamel is CEO of Jeddah-based Dallah Al-Baraka, the 3rd largest commercial entity in Saudi Arabia. Other notable affiliations include:

  • Chairman Arab Radio & Television (ART)
  • Founding member and shareholder, Al Shamal Islamic Bank (Khartoum, Sudan)
  • Partner, Tamlik Company Ltd (with Mohamed Binladen Co., Saleh Bin Laden)
  • Shareholder, Jordan Islamic Bank
  • Vice Chairman Bank Al Jazeera
  • Founder, Iqraa International Foundation

Samaa Abdul Aziz Ranjha[edit]

Samaa Abdul Aziz Ranjha is one of Saudi Arabia's leading commercial figures and philanthropists, overseeing a financial empire of some $28b in assets.

al Ranjha also created the Foundation.

Abdel Rahman Hassan Sharbatly[edit]

Abdel Rahman Hassan Sharbatly was the founder of Riyadh Bank, the 2nd largest Saudi commercial bank. Other affiliations include:

  • Board member, Beirut Ryad Bank SAL (with Prince Khaled bin Turki and Abdullah Taha Bakhsh)
  • Board member, Saudi Arabian Refinery Company (Chairman Prince Khaled bin Turki, directors include Kaaki (bin Mahfouz) and Al Rajhi)
  • Shareholder, Middle East Capital Group (shareholders include Abdullah Taha Bakhsh, Sami Baarma – National Commercial Bank)
  • CEO, Saudi Arabian Marketing Agencies and Company Ltd (Shareholder: Mohammad Bin Laden)
  • Ferrari, Maserati, Porsche, Audi and Volkswagen dealer
  • Shareholder, Egyptian Gulf Bank
  • Shareholder, Golden Pyramids Plaza Co
  • Shareholder, Savola Snack Food Co. Ltd (with Saleh bin Mahfouz and Abdullah Taha Bakhsh)

Khaled bin Mahfouz[edit]

Khalid bin Mahfouz was, before his death in 2009, one of the leading figures in Saudi banking circles.

Bin Mahfouz has written on his website that he has "never knowingly made any donation to Al Qaeda or to any organization or person acting on Al Qaeda's behalf or to any other terrorist organisation."[3] He engaged in extensive litigation against individuals associating him of terrorism.

Abdel Qader Faqeeh[edit]

(Adel Faqih, etc.). Affiliations include:

  • Board member, Ibn Baz Foundation
  • Chairman, Bank al Jazeera
  • Chairman, Savola Group (with Sharbatly), merged with Azizia Panda (owned by Al-Waleed bin Talal) - 13th largest Saudi company
  • Chairman, Makkah Construction & Development Company

Ahmad Turki Yamani[edit]

(Ahmed Zaki Yamani, etc.). Born 1930, Mecca, son of former Saudi Chief Justice. Affiliations:

  • Former Saudi minister of petroleum and mineral resources
  • Former director, ARAMCO
  • Founder, Investcorp (Board members include Abdullah Taha Bakhsh, Dr. Abdulhady Taher)

Abdel Hadi Taher[edit]

  • CEO, Taher Group of Companies, 52nd largest Saudi company
  • Owner, Marketing General Trading Corp (Jeddah)
  • Shareholder, Arab Company for Hotels & Contracting Ltd (with Ahmed Zaki Yamani)
  • Former Minister of State Former Governor of the Saudi state oil company Petromin ), under responsibility of Ahmed Zaki Yamani
  • Former director, Saudi European Bank (Paris), held 25% of the bank shares along with Ahmed Zaki Yamani

Mohammed Omar[edit]

No information available.

al Kuwait[edit]

al Kuwait, or al Kuwaiti, Sheikh Abu Ahmed, a Pakistani man born in Kuwait. Abu Ahmed is the "courier" whose discovery led to the finding of the location of Osama bin Laden.[4] He is also reportedly a part-owner of the compound in which Osama was living at the time of his death.[5]

Ahmad al Harbi[edit]

  • CEO, Ahmad Al Harbi Group

L'Investigateur notes, "L'Houssaine Kherchtou testified on February 21, 2001, during the trial of suspected al-Qaida militants in connection with the bombings of the American embassies in Kenya and Tanzania on August 7, 1998, that he was welcomed at Miram Shah guest house in Pakistan before joining Al-Qaida by 'Abu Ahmed al Harbi'."

Mohammed al-Issai[edit]

(al-Issaie, etc.). Affiliations:

  • Board member, Saudi Research & Marketing Company (with Mohammed Hussein Al Amoudi, Saleh Abdullah Kamel, Abdullah Bin Khalid Bin Mahfouz, Dallah Albaraka Group) - 20th largest Saudi company
  • CEO, Al Issai Trade Company (Daimler-Chrysler representative)
  • Deputy Chairman, Arab Cement Company (shareholders include Saudi Binladin Group, Bin Mahfouz, Al Rajhi - Chairman: Turki Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud)

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Wall Street Journal, 3/18/2003
  2. ^ United Press International, 2/11/2003
  3. ^ Bin Mahfouz Information
  4. ^ Goldman, Apuzzo, Adam, Matt. "Phone Call by Kuwaiti Courier Led to Bin Laden". ABC News / US. Retrieved 3 May 2011. 
  5. ^ Walsh, MacAskill, Burke, Declan, Ewen, Jason (2 May 2011). "Osama bin Laden Killed in US Raid on Pakistan Hideout". London: Guardian. Retrieved 3 May 2011. 

External links[edit]