Terrorism ruled out in Riyadh shooting

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Updated 16 October 2014

Terrorism ruled out in Riyadh shooting

Police and US officials ruled out terrorism in the shooting of two US citizens in Riyadh on Tuesday, saying the gunman was a former co-worker of the victims who was fired by their employer for misconduct.
Maj. Gen. Mansour Al-Turki, spokesman for the Ministry of Interior, said the attacker has been identified as Abdul Aziz al-Rashed, a former employee of defense contractor Vinnell Arabia, which works with the Saudi National Guard.
Al-Turki said the gunman was a 25-year-old old Saudi born in the United States. He said there was nothing in the gunman’s record that shows any affiliation with any extreme movements.
Saudi and US officials earlier said the suspect opened fire on the car of the two Americans at a gas station near King Fahd Stadium in the eastern part of Riyadh on Tuesday afternoon. One of the victims died while the second one suffered slight injuries.
Responding police operatives cornered and arrested the suspect, Riyadh police spokesman Col. Fawaz Al-Maiman said.
A statement released by the Riyadh police also confirmed the death of one American and said another was “lightly injured” in the attack.
Johann Schmonsees, spokesman of the US Embassy in Riyadh, confirmed that the two shooting victims are employees from Vinnell Arabia.
“We are in close contact with the Saudi government as we continue to gather details about the shooting and motive,” he said.
He added: “Our embassy is issuing a security message to US citizens to advise them on the situation and any safety precautions they should take.”
He said the security advisory would be used to communicate information about personal security threats of a general or systemic nature, such as crime trends, demonstrations, peaceful actions intended to disrupt normal activity, or localized events not likely to affect large numbers of US citizens.
Police and US Embassy officials did not release the names of the shooting victims.
Vinnell Arabia, which is partly owned by US-based Northup Grumman Corp., has helped to train Saudi National Guard troops since 1975. It says it has more than 1,250 employees, some of whom are former US soldiers. More than half of the employees are Saudis, the company says on its website.
According to reports, Vinnell Arabia employees have been attacked in the Kingdom before, most notably the May 2003 truck bombing at its compound in Riyadh that killed 10 Americans and three Filipino workers.


Wait is almost over for music fans eager to learn who will headline E-Prix concerts

Updated 13 November 2019

Wait is almost over for music fans eager to learn who will headline E-Prix concerts

  • Organizers promise this year’s line-up of international stars at Diriyah event will be bigger than ever

RIYADH: The first of the major international music acts that will perform at the Diriyah E-Prix this month will be announced on Wednesday.

There were incredible scenes at the event last year when David Guetta, One Republic, the Black Eyed Peas, Amr Diab, Enrique Iglesias and Jason Derulo rocked the UNESCO World Heritage site. About 40,000 fans flocked to the Diriyah Circuit, on the outskirts of Riyadh, for the after-race concerts, the first unsegregated music events in Saudi Arabia

The stage is set for even bigger and better things this year, with the promise of another two nights of unmissable music on Nov. 22 and 23 as the E-Prix racing returns.

“If you were one of the 40,000 who were lucky enough to be part of that watershed moment (last year) for the Kingdom, believe me, you have not seen anything yet,” said Prince Abdul Aziz Al-Faisal Al-Saud, chairman of the General Sports Authority.

“Last year we told people before we announced (the acts) they should get their tickets early to avoid disappointment. Once we revealed who was coming, the tickets sold out incredibly quickly. This year will be the same but even bigger, so for music fans who want to enjoy the biggest concerts in Saudi Arabia, the smart move is to get your ticket now.”

The Diriyah E Prix kicks off the sixth season of the ABB FIA Formula E Championship, the world’s premier all-electric motorsport series, with a double header of races. It also marks the start of Diriyah Season, a month of sport, entertainment, art, cultural festivities, food and retail experiences. Tickets for the Diriyah E Prix, which include entry to the after-race concerts, are available at www.diriyahseason.sa.