Car bomb explodes in Saudi

A small bomb has exploded in a car in Riyadh but has caused no casualties or damages.

    Saudi troops have cracked down on the opposition

    An Interior Ministry official said the car exploded while it

    was parked in front of a building in the Salam district on Monday

    .

    Police surrounded the site, preventing journalists and

    passers-by from reaching the area.

    "It was a small blast and the car was not stuffed with

    explosives but we are investigating the incident," the official said

    .

    Another official said the car belonged to a major in the

    security forces, adding the blast appeared to have been

    timed to coincide with the dusk Muslim prayers.

    Riyadh bombing

    "Forensic experts are now investigating the car to find out

    what substance was used," he added.

    A statement read out on Saudi state television said

    firefighters put out a blaze which broke out in the vehicle.

    Saudi Arabia has experienced several mainly anti-West attacks since May which have killed at least 50 people.

    Anti-western attacks have been
    increasing in Saudi Arabia

    In November, bombers blew up a

    Riyadh compound using an explosives-laden car, killing 18 and

    injuring 122.

    The Saudi regime routinely blames al-Qaida for the attacks, although independent confirmation is difficult. 

    Crackdown

    Meanwhile, Britain upgraded its advice for travel to Saudi

    Arabia on Sunday, saying "terror" attacks

    could be in the final stages of preparation.

    The travel advice followed a British newspaper report which

    said Saudi security forces had seized light planes packed with

    explosives, foiling a plot to blow up a Western airliner.

    Saudi

    Arabia denied the report.

    The kingdom has been conductiung a brutal crackdown on opposition groups for several years.

    But the crackdown intensified due to US pressure after the 11 September attacks.

    Opposition groups say the Saudi rulers have no democratic legitimacy, and have condemned them for contravening human rights and Islamic values.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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