Minister of Interior Prince Nayef bin Abdulaziz said yesterday that Saudi security forces have foiled more than 180 terrorist plots. If even 30 percent of those plots had been carried out, the Kingdom would have faced great tragedy, he noted.
Prince Nayef made the remarks during a press conference after attending the 7th Engineering Conference at Riyadh’s King Saud University yesterday.
The Interior Minister praised last week’s arrest of 208 suspected militants. He added that the suspects’ identities will be announced at a later date in order to avoid compromising ongoing security investigations.
Prince Nayef also urged Islamic scholars to play a greater role in Saudi Arabia’s efforts to eradicate terrorism and extremism. Security efforts alone cannot eliminate terrorism, he said. The intellectual effort is also necessary as it prevents extremist ideas from taking root in the minds of young Saudis. Additionally, prayer leaders in mosques are especially vital to uncovering terrorist plots because they understand the true nature of Islam.
Turning to Hajj-related matters, Prince Nayef said that arrangements have been completed for this year’s pilgrimage.