Since the start of Arab Spring in 2011, which prompted the overthrow of Middle East countries, massive protests and the four-year current civil war in Syria, Saudi Arabia has remained immune to most of the protesting and violence that has spread region wide.
However, that seems to have changed. On Friday, the Council of Senior Scholars in Saudi Arabia condemned the suicide attack in Dammam close to the Al-Anoud Mosque. The council is the highest religious body in Saudi Arabia and advises the Kingdom’s King on all religious matters. The council is also known by the name Senior Council of Ulema.
On Friday, four people died when a car bomb exploded close to the mosque in Dammam in eastern Saudi Arabia. The militants that set off the bomb failed attempting to hit the mosque when security officials foiled their attack.
Friday’s attack targeted the al-Anoud mosque’s worshippers during their prayers, said a ministry spokesperson. The Islamic State, the radical militant group that has taken control of half of Syria and at least one third of Iraq, claimed responsibility for the suicide bombing.
The blast took place only days after a suicide bombing May 22 in a province in eastern Saudi Arabia on a Shiite mosque that killed 21 people. That attack was also claimed by ISIS.
On Friday, in a prepared statement the board said terrorist groups that were behind the attack on the two mosques have exposed their faces. The statement added that Islam forbids the attacking of any places of worship even during legitimate wars. How can someone target mosques in a society of Muslims and on a country ruled by Shariah and serving the Two Holy Mosques, said the group.
The board in the same statement called for full unity to root out terrorism in their society. It reposed complete confidence in the security personnel in the country who are at all times alert to dangers posed by the deviant forces in the world.
The Grand Iman of Al-Azhar mosque in Egypt also condemned the attack that targeted worshippers. He expressed the need of all Muslims to keep Islamic unity.