2 Saudi guards killed in attack on Iraq frontier

2015-01-05 19:21
(File, Darko Vojinovic, AP)

(File, Darko Vojinovic, AP)

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Riyadh - Attackers killed two Saudi Arabian border guards including a senior officer and injured a third on the kingdom's frontier with Iraq in a rare shooting and suicide assault early on Monday, the Saudi interior ministry said.

Saudi Arabia's border with Iraq, which is heavily defended by a series of earth berms and fences and closely monitored by camera and radar, has been attacked in the past by mortar bombs fired from a distance, but more targeted attacks are rare.

The unidentified attackers shot at a border patrol near Arar and when security officers responded, one of the attackers was captured and detonated an explosives belt, the ministry said in a brief statement carried by the official Saudi Press Agency.

One of those killed was a senior officer, Major General Mansour Turki, the ministry's spokesperson, told Reuters. Turki did not give his name. The officer was named by local media, including Sabq news website, as General Oudah al-Belawi.

Saudi Arabia boosted its security on the frontier in July, adding thousands of troops to back up a border guards force, after the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) group seized swathes of territory in Iraq including Anbar province on the kingdom's border.

Saudi forces have joined US-led air strikes against Islamic State positions in Syria, and the group has called for "lone-wolf" attacks by sympathisers in the country against its security forces, Shi'ite Muslim minority and foreigners.
Read more on:    isis  |  iraq  |  saudi arabia

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