Saudi Arabia foils ISIS suicide attack on defense ministry

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Four people have been arrested in Saudi Arabia over an alleged plot to carry out a suicide bombing at the ministry of defense, authorities announced on Tuesday. It said explosives and other weapons had been seized.

Two would-be suicide bombers were identified as Ahmed Yasser al-Kaldi and Ammar Ali Mohammed, both of whom are citizens of Yemen. Two Saudi nationals – whose identities were not immediately released for security reasons – were arrested for alleged links to the plot.

“The suicide bombers, Ahmed Yaser al-Kaldi and Ammar Ali Muhammad, were arrested before they were able to reach their intended target,” the Presidency of State Security said in a statement. “The serious threat they posed was neutralized by the brave actions of Saudi Arabia’s security forces.”

Investigators believe that the two men planned to carry out an attack in the capital Riyadh against two buildings of the defense ministry’s headquarters. The terror cell was allegedly working on behalf of the Islamic State group (ISIS).

“Raids have been conducted in the Al-Rimal neighborhood of Riyadh, where it was discovered that a suicide bomber had been trained to wear an explosive belt during an attack,” State Security said. It did not disclose how the alleged plot was discovered.

During the raids, two explosive belts – each of them weighing about 7 kilograms (15.5 pounds) – were seized. Security forces also discovered nine homemade grenades, firearms, and “white weapons,” a term used to refer to daggers, swords, and similar types of weapons.

An investigation is continuing and the suspects remain in custody.

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