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Saudi Arabia Says 172 Suspected Militants Arrested for Terror Plots

  • VOA News

The Saudi Interior Ministry says it has foiled major terrorist operations after arresting 172 suspected militants.

The ministry said on Friday the targets in the alleged plots included public figures, oil installations and military bases - both domestic and abroad.

It said the detainees belonged to seven terrorist cells. The ministry said officials seized a large quantity of arms and more than five million dollars in cash. One of the cells was allegedly involved in an attack on an oil installation last year.

A ministry spokesman ,Mansour al-Turki said that some of the suspects were being trained in aviation to carry out attacks in Saudi Arabia, while others were sent abroad to take part in regional conflicts.

Ministry statements have referred to the suspects as members of the "deviant group," an apparent reference to al-Qaida.

The al-Qaida branch in Saudi Arabia has vowed to attack oil installations in Saudi Arabia and elsewhere that supply the United States.

Suspected al-Qaida militants launched dramatic attacks against Westerners in Saudi Arabia in 2003.

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