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ISIS Claims Responsibility in Suicide Bombing in Shia Mosque in Qatif Killing 21 Worshippers

Some of those killed in the ISIS suicide bombing in a mosque in Qatif, Saudi Arabia. The photograph has gone viral on social media

Some of those killed in the ISIS suicide bombing in a mosque in Qatif, Saudi Arabia. The photograph has gone viral on social media

At least 20 worshippers, including a child, were killed and 102 injured when a suicide bomber blew himself up in a Shia mosque in Qatif, in the Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia, after Friday prayers today.

On social media, ISIS, an Al Qaeda off-shoot which is now in control of half of Syria and huge territories in Iraq, has claimed responsibility for the attack, the second to hit the Shia community.

Many shared the ISIS statement, including a tweet which is now not available, which announced the commencement of ISIS activities in the oil-rich country, through “the Province of Najd through the Qatif operation” which killed the Rawafedh, a derogatory term used in Sunni-ruled Saudi Arabia and the rest of its Gulf neighbours to refer to Shias.

In November, eight people were killed in Al Ahsa, also in the Eastern province, when gunmen attacked a Shia community centre, where a religious ceremony was taking place.

The attack happened when a suicide bomber entered Iman Ali mosque in Al Qadih, Qatif, during the Friday prayers and blew himself up.

Saudi journalist Ahmed Al Omran tweets:

He adds:

Bahraini activist Ala'a Shehabi shares a video of angry Saudis after the attack chanting Labbaik Ya Hussain, a Shia chant which translates to “we are at your service O Hussain”:

Hussain is the grandson of Prophet Mohammed, revered by Shia Muslims, who lament his death in 680 to this day.

More videos and photographs are also emerging from Saudi Arabia, which has zero tolerance for dissent or protests, of more angry Saudis protesting the attack:

Ismail Al Madani shares these photographs:

And Ather Alqatif shares this video showing protestors chanting against terrorism:

Massive protests in Qatif denouncing terrorism and chanting “We will not bow except to Allah”

Saudi intellectual Dr Madawi Al Rasheed blamed sectarianism for the attack, saying:

The accumulation of sectarian tension which is taking the region by storm ends where it started and reaps the lives of innocents.

Others pointed the blame at Saudi Arabia itself, for allowing sectarianism to take hold of society, when it turned its back to growing sectarian sentiments fueled by Wahabbi religious scholars and writers.

Iyad El-Baghdadi explains:

He shares several videos broadcast on Saudi channels, featuring prominent Saudi scholars calling Shia adherants infidels, as well as tweets, calling for the annihilation of Shias. Here are a few examples of hate speech tolerated in Saudi Arabia:

Although many condemned the attack, Zaki Safr explains:

We fight terrorism with one hand, and feed it with the other

El-Baghdadi is appalled at how many spoke out on social media in support of the attack and the murder of Shias. He tweets:

Meanwhile, Abdulla Al Shammari offers a solution:

The Shia and the Sunnis are not my concern, there is a God to judge them.
We want to live in peace and we have to point out those who want to put obstacles in the path of peace

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