Sharura standoff: 1 of 10 hostages slain

Interior Ministry’s spokesman Gen. Mansur Al-Turki speaks to the press in Riyadh.

Interior Ministry’s spokesman Gen. Mansur Al-Turki speaks to the press in Riyadh.

New details have emerged about the standoff with two terrorists who had attacked a government building in Sharura on the Saudi-Yemeni border before blowing themselves up on Saturday morning.

The fugitives had fled after opening fire at a military command post, along with four other men, three of whom were killed in a police car chase on Friday.

“The terrorists had taken 10 people hostage, of whom one was killed and nine were released,” said Maj. Gen. Mansour Al-Turki, Interior Ministry spokesman.

“We didn’t rule out the possibility that they hid inside the building in order to lure security officers before they detonated the explosives they were wearing.”

Al-Turki added: “They had also fired on security officers during the standoff. We later found firearms that had not been used in their possession. We still don’t know the motives behind these attacks,” said Al-Turki, adding: “The Interior Ministry has its own security procedures at portal areas that will come under review in the wake of this incident.”

He explained: “Four security officers were killed and nine were injured in the incident, while Saleh Al-Shaibani, the only terrorist to have survived out of the six, has been arrested and is undergoing treatment. All of these men were on the wanted list.”

Al-Turki reproached the rumors that circulated on social media sites alleging that security forces were not ready to intercept the terrorist threat, which had reportedly appeared online. “We cannot account for threats that circulate on social media sites such as Twitter,” he said. “We can only deal with hard evidence.”

He said: “Our criminal investigation building also does not house any prisoners or detainees contrary to rumors.”

The six men had crossed over the port during Friday prayers before approaching the command post and opening fire.

“We will also look into how the terrorists were able to steal a patrol car to flee the scene,” said Al-Turki.
“We will also investigate how an illegal car was able to make it across the border despite the presence of patrol units.”

 

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