93 Suspected ISIS Terrorists Arrested, Plots Thwarted
The Ministry of Interior announced today 93 suspected terrorists affiliated with Daesh (ISIS) have been arrested since December 2014, including a woman, who were planning terrorist attacks in Saudi Arabia, including attack against the U.S. embassy in Riyadh.
Ministry of Interior spokesman Major General Mansour Al-Turki said the first cell, which called itself Soldiers of the Land of the Two Holy Mosques, was arrested on Dec. 31, 2014. The cell was made up of 15 Saudi nationals and led by an explosives expert. Another Saudi explosives expert was arrested on Jan. 31, 2015. Maj. Gen. Al-Turki said that the suspect arrested in January acknowledged pledging allegiance to Daesh leader Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi and that he was making improvised explosive devices (IEDs) to attack security personnel. He also admitted his role in posting how to make explosives on social media.
A cell consisted of 65 people, including a Palestinian, a Yemen, and two unknown nationalities, was arrested on March 8, 2015. The group was planning to attack residential complexes and incite sectarian strife similar to the Nov. 3, 2014 attack in the Al-Dalwah village in the Eastern Province. The group also targeted security forces and the General Intelligence prisons. They were also recruiting young people, disseminate Daesh propaganda, secure safe houses for wanted suspects, establish training areas for the young recruits and provide assistance to those who want to travel to conflict zones. The group was also involved in illegal fund raising activates to carry out their depraved objectives.
The security agencies also arrested a cell made up of nine Saudi nationals, including a including a woman who was unsuccessfully used to assassinate a military personnel. The cell was using social media to try to recruit young members and facilitate their travel to conflict zones.
On March 13, 2015, authorities discovered a plot by a Saudi national and two Syrians who live in a Gulf country, to carry out a suicide car bomber attack on the U.S. Embassy in Riyadh. On March 14, the Saudi and one of the Syrian plotters who entered the country a few days earlier, were arrested. The investigation in the plot is ongoing.
A Saudi citizen with a criminal history was arrested on April 18, 2015 in Al-Baha Province transporting weapons, weapons components, and bomb making material. Preliminary results of the investigation indicate that he was influenced by Daesh’s online propaganda.
Maj. Gen. Al-Turki reiterated the Kingdom’s unwavering commitment to confront all those who threaten the peace and security of the country.