Riyadh, Asharq Al-Awsat—A suicide attack has taken place at a Shi’ite mosque in the eastern province of Qatif resulting in a number of deaths, a Saudi Interior Ministry spokesman confirmed.
The details of the attack, along with a confirmed death toll, will be issued in the coming hours, the spokesman said.
The attack took place in the small village of Al-Qadeeh in Saudi Arabia’s eastern Qatif governorate. A suicide bomber, concealing a suicide belt under his clothes, blew himself up resulting in a number of deaths, including his own, Saudi Arabia’s Interior Ministry confirmed. No one immediately claimed responsibility for Friday’s attack.
“Security authorities will spare no effort in the pursuit of all those involved in this terrorist crime,” the spokesman said in comments to the state-owned Saudi Press Agency (SPA).
Saudi Arabia’s top Islamic body, the Council of Senior Scholars, issued a statement immediately condemning the attack as a “heinous crime.”
“This crime aims to incite fitna and divide the people of Saudi Arabia,” Grand Mufti Sheikh Abdulaziz Al Al-Sheikh warned in a statement carried by the SPA. Fitna is an Arabic term meaning “sedition” or “civil strife” that is often associated with sectarian conflict.
This is the second terrorist attack to target Saudi Arabia’s Shi’ite community in the past six months, with gunmen killing eight people in an attack on a Shi’ite mosque in Al-Ahsa in November. Riyadh subsequently announced that the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) had been responsible for the attack.