Terror strikes Madinah; 4 cops martyred; all worshippers safe

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Madinah Gov. Prince Faisal bin Salman prays at the Prophet's Mosque after the blast. (SPA)
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People look at the smoke rising from the scene of the blast in Madinah as 4 soldiers are martyred preventing bomber from accessing the Prophet's Mosque.
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Madinah Gov. Prince Faisal bin Salman talks to a security official who was hurt in the blast. (SPA)
Updated 05 July 2016

Terror strikes Madinah; 4 cops martyred; all worshippers safe

MADINAH/JEDDAH/QATIF: Normalcy prevailed over Madinah as the region’s Governor, Prince Faisal bin Salman, prayed amongst hundreds of thousands of worshipers at the Prophet’s Mosque hours after a suicide bomber attacked a police post outside the holy mosque.
The blast came after mosques were targeted in both Jeddah and Qatif. 
Four policemen were killed and five others were injured in Madinah when a suicide bomber struck in the vicinity of a police post outside the Prophet’s Mosque, according to the interior ministry.
The bombing took place in a parking lot between the city court and the mosque, visited by millions every year.
When security officials became suspicious of an individual who was heading to the Prophet’s Mosque they approached him resulting in him triggering his explosive belt killing four of the officers and injuring others.
Videos circulated on social media showed a car burning and at least two security officers lying on the ground and two others lay crumpled near a burning car. The bomber also died in the attack, which took place at the time of iftar. No worshipper was injured in the attack, said a press correspondent from the scene.
Earlier, in Qatif, two suicide bombers blew themselves up one after the other outside the Faraj Al-Omran Mosque. No casualties were reported. A witness said a car bomb was detonated near the mosque, which was followed by a suicide attack just before 7 p.m. Police have launched an investigation into the attack.
Before that at 2:15 a.m., a suicide bomber blew himself up near the US Consulate in Jeddah. Security officers confronted him as he moved suspiciously at a parking lot of the Dr. Soliman Fakeih Hospital. Two policemen were wounded lightly in the attack.
The bomber was name as Abdullah Qalzar Khan, an expat from Pakistan, who lived in Jeddah with his wife and her parents and came to the country 12 years ago to work as a private driver.
Photos taken from the scene showed the bomber’s body dismembered by the blast.
No claims of responsibility for any of the attacks have been made.
Daesh has carried out a series of bombing and shooting attacks in Saudi Arabia since 2014 that have killed scores of people, mostly Shiites and members of the security services. In January, a suicide bomber attacked a mosque in Al-Ahsa, killing four people before worshippers disarmed and tied up an accomplice who had shot at them.
In October last year, a gunman opened fire on worshippers in Qatif, killing five people before he was shot dead by police.

Saudi efforts to promote tolerance, moderation lauded

Updated 23 July 2019

Saudi efforts to promote tolerance, moderation lauded

RIYADH: The rector of the Islamic University of Brussels hailed Saudi efforts to promote moderate Islam, reject extremism, fight against terrorism, serve the religion and its followers, and respond to aberrant ideologies that have harmed the Muslim world.

Dr. Mustafa Khader Donmez also praised the programs carried out by the Saudi Ministry of Islamic Affairs, Dawah and Guidance.

“The Kingdom has established specialized scientific, educational and media institutions, called for the unity of the Islamic nation, and cooperated with all that strengthens the nation’s unity and preserves its security,” he said.

“Saudi Arabia has been holding conferences inside and outside the Kingdom, to which it invited scholars and specialists, in cooperation with regional and international bodies to promote Islamic tolerance and address the causes of extremism and terrorism.”

Donmez said the Kingdom has invited Islamic institutions and international bodies to implement programs and events that fight extremism and condemn terrorism.

“The Kingdom is keen to promote international peace and communication between cultures and the followers of different religions through calling for interreligious and intercultural dialogue, a domain in which the Kingdom has been a pioneer,” he added.

Saudi Arabia “has taken the lead in spending for this purpose as it is in line with its high status on the Islamic and international levels,” he said. SPA Riyadh