RealNews

Westerners Seek Protection in Saudi Arabia

Westerners in Saudi Arabia are responding to terror attacks by moving to high-security compounds or even to Bahrain, and by pushing for the right to armed private guards, according to diplomats and local businessmen. Western embassies in Riyadh, the Saudi capital, are negotiating with the government for a relaxation of the ban on private security guards carrying firearms, a Western diplomat said, speaking on customary condition of anonymity. Some Westerners have expressed concern that terrorist sympathizers may have infiltrated the Saudi security services, the diplomat said. Saudi security forces have stepped up their presence in and around Riyadh as they hunt for the kidnappers of Paul Johnson, an American who was abducted on Saturday by a group calling itself al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula. Johnson, 49, of Stafford Township, New Jersey, was employed by Lockheed Martin and worked on Apache helicopters. The day he was seized, Islamic militants shot dead another American, Kenneth Scroggs, from Laconia, N.H., in his garage. Scroggs was the third Westerner killed in a week, after the shooting death of an Irish cameraman for the British Broadcasting Corp. on June 6 and another American who was killed in his garage on June 8. Full Story

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