Saudi policeman killed in raid, IS flags found: ministry



RIYADH, SAUDI ARABIA- A Saudi policeman was shot dead on Friday during a raid in which three people were arrested and flags of the Islamic State group were found, the interior ministry said.
The killing came with the Gulf region on alert against attacks by IS, which has been blamed for killing other Saudi policemen and has claimed three deadly mosque bombings in the kingdom and Kuwait.



The ministry said security officers came under fire as they searched for a suspect at a home in Taif, a mountain city about 200 kilometres (125 miles) east of Jeddah at 4:30 am (0130 GMT).
A sergeant died "as a result of the exchange of fire", said a statement carried by the official Saudi Press Agency.
"They arrested three suspects, confiscated Daesh flags, silencers and personal laptops," the ministry added.
Daesh is an Arabic acronym for IS, Sunni extremists known for their brutality who have seized large parts of Iraq and Syria, inspiring attacks elsewhere in the world.
The wanted man, identified as Yousif Abdulatif Shabab al-Ghamdi, remains at large.
An IS-affiliated group in Saudi Arabia, calling itself Najd Province, claimed the suicide bombings in May and June at mosques of the minority Shiite community.
Shiites have intensified security around their houses of worship throughout the Gulf as a result.
IS considers Shiites to be heretics.
The June 26 Kuwait bombing killed 26 people, after blasts on successive Fridays in eastern Saudi Arabia left 25 dead.
The kingdom released a list of 16 men suspected of involvement in those attacks and promised rewards for help in catching them.
Gulf interior ministers on Friday held an emergency meeting in Kuwait and called for coordination to confront "this serious epidemic".
In Saudi Arabia in April, the interior ministry said two suspects had been arrested for gunning down two policemen.
One of the suspects allegedly confessed that he was following orders from IS.
The shooting was the fifth attack on security forces and foreigners in Saudi Arabia allegedly linked to IS since late last year, according to the interior ministry.
Ministry spokesman General Mansour al-Turki said in May that police have foiled many plots and had themselves become the most frequent targets of "terrorist" attacks.
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Saturday, July 4th 2015
AFP
           


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