October 31 – Saudi authorities say they foiled a terrorist bomb plot due to have been carried out earlier this month at a World Cup qualifying match.
The Saudi Interior Ministry said two “terrorist” cells were dismantled and eight people arrested. It said two Pakistanis, a Syrian and a Sudanese national were arrested over the car bombing plot by militants at the Saudi Arabia vs United Arab Emirates game in Jeddah on October 11.
A further four, all Saudi nationals, were detained after allegedly receiving instructions from an IS leader in Syria as part of a separate unrelated plot to kill security officers in the Shaqra district, north of the capital Riyadh.
Since late 2014, IS has claimed a series of bombings and shootings against Shias in the Sunni-majority kingdom, as well against security forces. In July, a suicide bomber killed four security officers and injured five others near one of Islam’s holiest sites, in the city of Medina.
IS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi has called for attacks against Saudi Arabia, which is part of the US-led coalition bombing his fighters in Syria and Iraq.
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