Saudi diplomat Adel al-Jubeir told the conference that the kingdom was introducing new measures to prevent Saudi charitable donations from supporting terrorism, saying the country had frozen $5.6 million in assets and was setting up new regulations for the establishment of charities. US Secretary of State Colin Powell said the steps amounted to ‘a very serious effort’ by the Saudi government: ‘We have asked them to do more and now they have responded in what seems to me to be a fairly forthright way.’

The US administration has repeatedly voiced its support for the Saudi government’s attempts to tackle terrorism, despite allegations from the press and Congress that the ‘money trail’ from Al-Qaeda leads to Riyadh.