Riyadh, Asharq Al-Awsat – Asharq Al-Awsat has learnt that the attack on a Saudi Arabian Border Guard position in the area of Najran along the Saudi – Yemeni border on Tuesday, which resulted in the deaths of two Guards and a third being injured, may have ties to Al Qaeda.
This attack saw one man, driving a jeep, open fire on the border guards as he drove through metal security barricades in an attempt to illegally enter Yemen. The attacker, reportedly using a machine gun, fired upon the border guards before being killed. It is possible that the attacker was trying to illegally enter Yemen in order to join up with or rendezvous with Al Qaeda members, who have a strong presence in Yemen.
During a press conference, Saudi Border Guard spokesman Lt. Colonel Salem Bin Saleh al-Salmi did not rule out the attacker having connections to Al Qaeda, stressing that “all hypotheses are open.”
The attacker, who was attempting to illegally cross into Yemen, was reportedly well-built and dressed in black. He was also armed with a machine gun, with reports indicating that he was well-trained in armed combat.
Lt. Colonel al-Salmi told Asharq Al-Awsat that “it seems that this figure that tried to infiltrate Yemeni soil and who killed two of our men and injured a third was extremely well-trained in the use of arms.”
The Saudi Border Guard spokesman said that there is a strong possibility that this figure had ties to “the deviant group”, which is a term used by the Saudi authorities to denote Al Qaeda. Lt. Colonel al-Salami said that all indications point to the gunman having ties to “members of the deviant group” as he attacked Saudi Arabia security officials, and was well trained in the use of firearms.
Lt. Colonel al-Salmi stressed that the concerned authorities are still investigating the circumstances surrounding this incident, and that more details will be revealed in the coming days.
The official Saudi Press Agency revealed that Colonel Abdul Jalil Sharie al-Otaibi and Sergeant Barrak Bin Al al-Hart were killed in the attack, and that Sergeant Abboud Bin Faleh al-Aklabi was wounded.