Saudi Arabia’s arrest of two men suspected of plotting terror attacks is connected to the recent closure of Western embassies in the regions, Interior Ministry spokesman Maj. Gen. Mansour al-Turki told Al Arabiya on Thursday.
The interior ministry had said the surveillance of messages exchanged through social media led to the arrest of the two suspects, who hail from Yemen and Chad.
Maj. Gen. al-Turki said the Chadian suspect was previously deported but returned to the kingdom using a different passport
Initial investigation revealed that the two individuals were plotting suicide attacks, the interior ministry said, adding that computer hardware, electronic devices and mobile phones were seized with the suspected.
“The security authorities through monitoring and follow up of published messages of incitement and hatred through social networks managed at the beginning of the last ten days of the holy month of Ramadan to arrest two expatriates,” the ministry added, in a statement published by the official state news agency SPA.
“The two recruited themselves for the service of deviant thought, as evidenced by their seized items which included computer hardware, electronic media and mobile phones and which indicated their communication with the deviant group abroad either by electronic encrypted messages or through identities via the social networks (such as Abu Alfidaa, Hspouy, Muawiya Almadani, Rasasah fi Qusasah, and Abu El Feda Aldokulai) so as to exchange information about impending suicide operations in the region,” the statement added.
The official said investigation with the suspects was still ongoing.
Hundreds of al-Qaeda militants have been arrested in Saudi Arabia over the past 10 years. Acts of terrorism have been rare in the kingdom since a 2006 domestic campaign that dealt a blow to the terror network.