The federal investigators have started a manhunt for missing Saudi men linked to the mass shooting at the Pensacola naval base on December 6. They have detained ten Saudi military students from Pensacola but several others remain missing in the wake of the attack. Advisories have been issued putting military bases across the United States on high alert but the number of missing Saudi students have not been made public. It is still not clear whether they pose risk to the public or not.
The attacker, identified as Mohammed al-Shamrani, had reportedly travelled from Pensacola to New York, days before the attack, with three fellow Saudi students and visited several museums. According to media reports, authorities are investigating the motive of the visit and want to ascertain if the group met anyone else in New York. The threat of accomplices compounded from the fact that the gunman showed videos of mass shootings at a dinner party ahead of the attack that killed three people.
Reports also claim that one of the Saudi students recorded the attack on camera while two others watched it from a nearby car. Though the shooting has not been officially declared as a terror attack, attacker's tweets shared the views of Osama Bin Laden, founder of al-Qaeda, a terrorist militant organisation. "The security is a shared destiny...You will not be safe until we live it as reality in (Palestine), and American troops get out of our land (sic)," tweeted the shooter from his now-suspended account.
Ria Katz, director of SITE, which monitors jihadist media, said the style of the Pensacola shooting does not necessarily resemble one group over another. “However, given that ISIS has very little to lose at this point, it wouldn't be surprising if it claimed the attack, regardless of the attacker's potential allegiances,” she tweeted. According to SITE, al-Shamrani had posted a short manifesto before the attack where he had called America ‘a nation of evil’ and said that he was against evil.