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Several dead in Saudi Arabia Shia mosque blast

Saturday 30 January 2016, by siawi3


Big News
Saturday 30th January, 2016

RIYADH, Saudi Arabia Several people were reported dead and dozens injured on Friday when a suicide bomber blew himself up near the entrance of a Shia mosque is eastern Saudi Arabia, officials said, suspecting it to be the handiwork of the Islamic State terror group.

The officials of the interior ministry said security forces prevented two suicide bombers from entering the Imam Rida Mosque in Mahasen neighbourhood in the al-Ahsa region.

The bombers had apparently planned to target congregational Friday prayers when hundreds of worshippers had gathered inside the mosque for the weekly special afternoon nimaz.

They said one of the bombers succeeded in detonating his explosives vest while the other was caught after he was injured.

“When security men stopped them, one blew himself up at the entrance of the mosque and there was an exchange of fire with the other. He was wounded and arrested wearing an explosive belt,” an interior minister spokesman said.

Pictures of the blast scene posted to social media showed several bodies on the ground. But the authorities said four people were dead and at least 25 were injured.

Saudi Interior Ministry spokesman Mansour Al-Turkey told CNN Arabic there was a “terrorism attempt” at the mosque in Mahasen.

“The situation has been handled,” Al-Turkey was quoted as saying by CNN.

The identities of those who were killed or injured weren’t immediately released.

No immediate claim of responsibility for the attack was made even as the authorities said that they were suspecting that the bombers belonged to or were influenced by the Islamic State militant group which governs large swathes in Iraq and Syria.

The Sunni militant group is strongly opposed to the Saudi monarchy and has stated that it wants to extend its caliphate to Saudi Arabia and beyond.

In the last eight months, it was the fourth deadly attack on a Shia mosque in Saudi Arabia — a kingdom where 85 to 90 percent of the citizens are Sunni.

The previous three attacks were claimed by the Islamic State, the Islamist terror group which treats Shias as apostates or out of the realm of Islam, who are “waajibul qatl” or deserve to be murdered.