Gunman opens fire at Saudi education department office

Attacker opens fire at education department office in southern Saudi Arabia killing at least six

Photo by: Reuters (Archive)
Photo by: Reuters (Archive)

Saudi Interior Ministry spokesman General Mansour Turki

A man killed six employees at an education department office in Saudi Arabia on Thursday, the interior ministry said, describing it as a "criminal" attack.

Ministry spokesman General Mansour al Turki said the attack in which two others were wounded occurred in the southern province of Jazan at about 2:00 pm (1100 GMT).

"This is a criminal act," said Turki, adding that one suspect had been arrested.

He was unable to immediately confirm how the victims were killed but state television reported it was a shooting.

The identity and motive of the suspect was unclear.

Al Ekhbariya state television, citing police, said the suspect was not an employee but had some business at the ministry.

Officers responded to a report that a man "was shooting at a number of employees while they were carrying out their duties," the channel reported on its Twitter account.

On the Internet, purported pictures from the scene showed at least five ambulances outside a building resembling a low-rise apartment block.

The attack occurred in the remote community of Ad Dair, several kilometres (miles) from the Yemeni border.

Jazan and other southern border districts have been shelled by rebels in Yemen since March last year when a Saudi-led coalition began air strikes and later ground operations to halt the advance of the Houthi rebels there.

More than 90 soldiers and civilians have been killed in shelling and skirmishes in the Saudi border region.

Elsewhere in the kingdom there have been mass shootings and bombings carried out by DAESH terrorist group.