Asharq Al-Awsat, Saudi Arabia – Security forces in Saudi Arabia have arrested seven suspected of taking part in terrorist operations in a series of dawn raids on Wednesday. An eight man was detained after it transpired he was wanted by the authorities for participating in terrorist activities inside the Kingdom.
The men were arrested in two different locations, with four seized in the al Naseem neighborhood, East of Riyadh. Security personnel surrounded a house were the suspects were hiding. They made no attempt to resist and surrendered peacefully to the authorities.
The second raid took place on the highway between Riyadh and Taif. A Ford car was stopped and its four male occupants were arrested. Three were taken for questioning for possible involvement in terrorist activity and a fourth Saudi national was arrested for taking part in terrorism.
An official in the Ministry of Interior told Asharq Al Awsat, on Wednesday, “Security forces have painstakingly searched the al Naseem neighborhood at dawn. During the searches, four suspects were arrested and taken for questioning. The official refused to be drawn into a discussion of any links between the detainees and known terrorist figures in Saudi Arabia, saying the arrests were part of “a routine security operation” and that “similar campaigns were carried out in Taif where a number of suspects were arrested.” Security sources revealed to Asharq Al Awsat that the latest arrests are part of a wider ongoing operation to detain individuals involved in terrorist operations, adding that an investigation is currently underway to determine the suspect’s involvement in illegal activities. Security forces around the Kingdom had raided a number of houses and rest houses earlier this year and in 2004 and arrested wanted suspect.
In the last few months, the authorities have succeeded in capturing a large number of terrorist sympathizers inside the Kingdom. A number of those were responsible for publishing material on outlawed internet sites while others transported explosives and secured hideouts. Another group financed terrorist operations and led the recruitment drive.