UAE security forces arrest cell planning militant attacks

UAE security forces arrest cell planning militant attacks

PanARMENIAN.Net - Security forces in the United Arab Emirates have arrested a cell of UAE and Saudi Arabian citizens which was planning to carry out militant attacks in both countries and other states, Reuters reported citing the official news agency WAM .

The U.S.-allied UAE, a federation of seven emirates and a major oil exporter, has been spared any attack by al Qaeda and other insurgency groups.

But some of its emirates have seen a rise in Islamist sentiment in recent years, and Dubai, a business and tourism hub cosmopolitan city that attracts many Westerners, could make an attractive target for Islamist militants, analysts say.

The arrested group had acquired materials and equipment for use in what WAM called terrorist operations.

"The security authorities in the UAE, in coordination with the related security parties in Saudi Arabia, announced the arrest of an organized cell from the deviant group that was planning to carry out actions against national security of both countries and some brotherly states," WAM said without elaborating.

The phrase "the deviant group" is often used by authorities in Saudi Arabia to describe al Qaeda members.

Saudi Arabia has arrested thousands of suspected militants since the 2003-2006 attacks on residential compounds for foreign workers and on Saudi government facilities in which were dozens of people were killed.

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