Saudi cities rocked by multiple suicide bombings

Jul 05, 2016, 12:49 AM EDT
Medina, Saudi Arabia
(Source: hajj2006/flickr)

Suicide bombers struck three cities across Saudi Arabia on Monday, killing at least four security officers and injuring five others. One of the assaults, which targeted U.S. diplomats, Shiite worshippers and a security headquarters, took place at a mosque in the holy city of Medina. Islamic State militants have carried out a string of attacks in the kingdom over the past two years, with 26 strikes in June, according to the figures shared by the interior ministry.

In the early hours of the day, a suicide bomber blew himself up near the U.S. consulate in Saudi Arabia’s city of Jeddah, writes the BBC. No casualties were reported after the explosion although two security personnel were injured.

The suicide bomber in the Jeddah blast was identified as a 34-year-old Pakistani driver, named Abdullah Qalzar Khan, who was living in the city with his family, notes Reuters. Another attacker struck a mosque in the Shia-majority province of Qatif but there were no casualties, as worshippers had already returned home to break their fasts.

No group claimed responsibility for Monday’s attacks although the bombings in Qatif and Jeddah bore the hallmarks of Islamic State modus operandi, reports The Guardian. The top Saudi clerical body denounced the assault, describing the attackers as “renegades,” who have no religion.