Saudi Arabia says it foiled a plot to bomb a World Cup 2018 qualifying match earlier this month and has arrested terror suspects linked to the Islamic State militant group.
An alleged terror cell had planned to place a car bomb outside the Al-Jawhara stadium in Jeddah during an October 11 match between Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, Saudi authorities announced Sunday. The sports complex can seat 62,000 spectators.
Four foreigners - two Pakistanis, a Syrian, and a Sudanese national - were detained a day before the attack was to take place. Officials have not said whether they are tied to Islamic State.
Saudi officials say a separate group of four Saudi citizens planned to target police officers in Shaqraa province under the direction of an Islamic State leader, but were also arrested before carrying out the plot.
In another statement, the country's interior ministry published the names of nine suspects - eight Saudis and one Bahraini - wanted for alleged attacks on security forces in the eastern provinces of Qatif and Dammam, where a series of shootings targeting police followed the January execution of a prominent Shi’ite cleric.