Saudi police foil mosque suicide bombing

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RIYADH (APP) - Saudi police shot dead a would-be suicide bomber targeting a mosque in Qatif, the interior ministry said on Wednesday.

It was one of two attacks disrupted in the kingdom's Eastern Province since early August, when a Syrian and a Saudi were arrested on their way to bomb a restaurant, the ministry said.

Tuesday's attempted attack happened around sunset prayers, the ministry said in a statement.

Security officers "managed to foil a terrorist operation targeting worshippers" at Mustafa Mosque in Qatif, the ministry said.

When suspicious officers questioned the man, he tried to detonate a bomb in a sports bag on his back, leading the police to open fire.

The suspect died on the way to hospital.

Officers found four kilograms (8.8 pounds) of explosives in his bag.

The earlier case happened on August 5 when police stopped a suspicious vehicle in Dammam, adjacent to Qatif.

Two suspects tried to flee but were detained.

Officers found guns and a suicide belt with more than seven kilograms of explosives, the ministry said in a separate statement.

"They were trained by Daesh elements abroad to target, in a suicide operation, Al-Saif Restaurant and Cafe in Tarot" neighbouring Qatif, the ministry said, using an Arabic acronym for the Islamic State (IS) group.

Initial investigation identified the suspects as Abdullah al-Ghunaimi, 27, of Saudi Arabia , and Hussein Mohammed Ali, 24, of Syria.

"They were to implement the operation at 11:00 pm the same day," the statement said.

"Investigations so far reveal that two other Syrians are involved and have been arrested."

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