Saudi sentences to death Yemeni attacker on Spanish theatre group

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Hind Al Soulia - Riyadh - It was the first assault since the Kingdom announced a wave of entertainment events

Dec 29, 2019

December 29, 2019

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Saudi Arabia has sentenced to death the Yemeni national who attacked a Spanish theatre group in Riyadh last month, state television said.

The court also sentenced an accomplice to 12 years and six months in jail for the November 11 attack which Riyadh has linked to militant group Al-Qaeda, and which Madrid said left four performers wounded.

"The criminal court issues a preliminary ruling handing the death sentence to the perpetrator of the terrorist attack... in Riyadh," the official Al-Ekhbariya television reported.

The 33-year-old suspect took orders from an Al Qaeda leader in Yemen to carry out the attack in the capital, in which he wounded four Spanish nationals during a live performance on November 11, according to state TV. The group is yet to claim the attack.

It was the first assault since the Kingdom announced a wave of entertainment events.

The Riyadh Season festival is part of a broad government push to open up the kingdom to tourists and diversify its economy away from oil. Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has pursued sweeping social reforms that mark the biggest cultural shakeup in the kingdom's modern history, allowing mixed-gender concerts and the reopening of cinemas.

Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula is considering to be the strongest arm of the militant group.

Saudi Arabia is leading a military coalition supporting the Yemeni government against the Iran-backed Houthi rebels and has also been involved in the fight against Al Qaeda.

Updated: December 29, 2019 04:09 PM

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