Suicide bomber at Shiite mosque was Islamic State operative: Saudi Arabia 


May 24, Riyad: Friday’s suicide bombing at a Shiite mosque in the east of the country that killed 21 was carried out by an Islamic State militant, Saudi Arabia has conformed.

In a statement carried by the official of Saudi Press Agency on late Saturday said that the Interior Ministry identified the bomber as Saudi citizen Saleh bin Abdulrahman al-Qashaami.

Al-Qashaami was wanted for being an active member of an IS-linked terrorist cell, the ministry said. Lab tests showed that the explosive use in the bombing was a military-grade compound known as RDX.

The attack in the village of al-Qudeeh in the eastern Qatif region was the deadliest assault by militants in the kingdom since a 2004 al-Qaida attack on foreign worker compounds.

It targeted members of Saudi Arabia‘s Shiite minority — a sect that both the Islamic State group and ultraconservatives in Saudi Arabia regularly denounce as heretics.

A statement from the IS group’s al-Bayan radio station posted to militant websites Saturday said a new branch of the group was behind the attack, which it said was carried out by a Saudi going by the nom de guerre Abu Amer al-Najdi.

The IS group’s activities are primarily focused on Iraq and Syria. Its claim of responsibility for Friday’s strike and the official Saudi confirmation bolster concerns it has established a toehold inside the oil-rich kingdom, as it has done in Libya and Egypt‘s Sinai Peninsula.

It has warned of more “black days” for Shiites in Saudi Arabia, a member of the U.S.-led coalition targeting the group.

The Oslo Times

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