RIYADH, Saudi Arabia — Four men were killed Sunday, as they attacked a Saudi security services base in a town north of the capital Riyadh, the official Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported.
The agency, quoting a spokesman for the state security services, said three policemen were also wounded and that an investigation had been launched to identify the perpetrators.
“A group of terrorists launched a desperate attack that was repelled,” SPA said, without giving further details.
The London-based Asharq al-Awsat newspaper earlier reported that the attack targeted state security forces in the town of Zulfi, 260 kilometers (160 miles) north of the capital.
It said the attackers had rammed a vehicle into a security barrier around the base in an attempt to gain entry.
Two gunmen then stepped out of the vehicle and opened fire, sparking a gun battle with police, who killed them, the paper reported.
A third was gunned down as he attempted to flee, while a fourth died as he tried to set off an explosive belt, the paper said, but did not mention any casualties among security personnel.
Unconfirmed videos and pictures posted on social media showed the bodies of two alleged terrorists in black clothing, lying on the street in front of a vehicle that had no visible damage to its front end. A third body was sprawled in the back seat of the car.
The Saudi online Ajel news agency that covers local news in the kingdom tweeted a video purportedly showing part of the gun battle.
— Ajel News (@AjelEnglish) April 21, 2019
The attackers carried machine guns, bombs, and Molotov cocktails, and were identified as Saudi militants who belonged to the Islamic State, Al Arabiya reported.
On April 7, two men armed with explosives were killed and two others arrested as they attacked a security checkpoint in a predominantly Shiite region in eastern Saudi Arabia, which has seen years of demonstrations against the Sunni royal family.
Sunday’s attack took place in a majority Sunni region.
An estimated 10-15 percent of the ultra-conservative kingdom’s 32 million population are Shiite, although no official figures exist.
Times of Israel staff contributed to this report.