Last week’s foiled plot attempt to attack the Grand Mosque in Mecca indicates a growing Islamic State intent to mount mass-casualty attacks in Saudi Arabia, according to reports.
A suspect in the planned attack on the mosque blew himself up in a nearby neighborhood when security forces surrounded a home where the man was hiding, according to the Ministry of Interior as reported by CNN. The suspect refused to comply with demands to surrender, opened fire on security forces and then killed himself, officials said.
The explosion caused the partial collapse of the building in which the suspect was hiding. Six expatriates were injured and taken to a hospital, and five security personnel received minor injuries, a Saudi Press official in London told CNN.
The attack was organized by five people, including one woman, and were supported by three groups, two based in Mecca and one in Jeddah according to Saudi Arabia’s Interior Ministry.
The news of the foiled attack was largely overshadowed by news of the Kingdom’s change in leadership, promoting Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and removing former Crown Prince Mohammed bin Nayef from power. The foiled attack underscores that extremist groups, and Daesh in particular, consider Saudi Arabia and peaceful followers of Islam an enemy.