Saudi Arabia Says It Detained 149 Al-Qaeda Suspects, Foiled Attack Plots

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Massoud A. Derhally and Zainab Fattah
November 26, 2010

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Saudi Arabian security forces detained 149 people over the past eight months suspected of links with al-Qaeda, Interior Ministry spokesman Major General Mansour al-Turki said.

The arrests foiled about 10 planned attacks, including on government and military targets and officials and media personalities, al-Turki told a televised press conference in Riyadh today. The investigation is ongoing and it’s too early to determine whether oil installations were also targeted, he said.

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Saudi Arabia, the world’s largest oil supplier, stepped up operations against al-Qaeda in 2004 after militants struck an oil installation and stormed a housing complex in the city of al-Khobar, killing 22 foreign workers. Many al-Qaeda fighters seeking to escape the crackdown fled across the border to Yemen, the source of several recent attempted bombings by the group.

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