A Saudi newspaper reported Sunday that authorities there have arrested nine American citizens and 24 people as terror suspects during the past week.
The arrests also included 14 Saudis, three Yemenis, two Syrians, an Indonesian, a Filipino, an Emirati, a Kazakhstan national and a Palestinian, the Saudi Gazette said.
A U.S. State Department official, when asked about the report, said “We are aware of reports alleging that several U.S. citizens were detained in Saudi Arabia.
The Department of State takes its obligation to assist U.S. citizens abroad seriously. Due to privacy considerations, we have no further comment.”
The Saudi Gazette did not say if any of what it called the “terror suspects” were linked to the Islamic State group, which has claimed several deadly attacks against security forces and Shi’ites in the kingdom in recent months
On Friday, a suicide bomber attacked a Shi’ite mosque in Eastern Province killing four people before worshippers disarmed and tied up his accomplice who had fired on them.
Islamic State, a radical Sunni group that considers Shi’ites heretics, did not claim that attack.
The Saudi Gazette said some 532 Islamic State suspects accused of plotting attacks in the kingdom are being questioned ahead of their trial at the criminal court in Riyadh.
Source: VOA [xyz-ihs snippet=”Adsense-responsive”]