Turkey condemns ISIS attack on Saudi Arabia’s Shia mosque

Turkish Foreign Ministry strongly condemns attack claimed by ISIS on Shia mosque in Saudi Arabia and says it is ready to cooperate with the country to fight terrorism

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Updated Jul 28, 2015

Turkey’s Foreign Ministry has strongly condemned an attack claimed by ISIS on a Shia mosque in Saudi Arabia during Friday prayers, and said Turkey is ready to cooperate with the country in order to fight terrorism.

The foreign ministry statement said, “We reiterate our strong support for the security and stability of Saudi Arabia.”

ISIS has claimed responsibility for the deadly attack at the mosque in Saudi Arabia's Eastern Province of Qatif which killed 21 people, and has injured over 50.

A suicide bomber detonated explosives wrapped around his body in the middle of the mosque during Friday prayers.

Photos of the attack surfaced on Twitter and Facebook, showing the bloody floor of the mosque, the cracked walls and covered dead bodies.

ISIS identified the bomber as Abu Amer al Najdi publishing one of his pictures, and said that he used an explosive belt in the attack.

SITE, a US-based monitoring group tracking ISIS activities, has released a report fully corroborating the group’s announcement.

"Security authorities will spare no effort in the pursuit of all those involved in this terrorist crime," a statement from the government released by the state run SPA news agency read.

It is the first attack targeting Shiite Muslims in Saudi Arabia since November when gunmen killed at least eight people in an attack on a religious anniversary celebration in Al Ahsa province.

The attack occurred in Ali Ibn Abi Taleb mosque in Qadih village of Qatif province, home of the Saudi Shiite minority and the place of past demonstration demanding rights for Shiites in the country.

Shiites constitute 10 to 15 percent of Saudi Arabia’s population and are mostly concentrated in the Qatif and Al Ahsa provinces.

The attacks may further increase the tension between the country’s Shiite community and Saudis who adhere to Wahhabi school of Sunni Islam.

Sectarian tension has been rising in the region since Saudi Arabia started conducting military operations against Shiite Houthi militias in Yemen to restore President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi, who had to flee the country after Houthis seized power earlier this year.

ISIS has also claimed responsibility for a suicide bombing attack which took place during Friday prayers at a mosque in the Yemeni capital of Sanaa on Friday.

TRTWorld and agencies