An Islamist militant suicide bomber disguised as a woman blew himself up outside a Shi’ite mosque in eastern Saudi Arabia on Friday, killing himself and three other people, the second attack of its kind in the world’s top oil exporter in one week.
The bombing, which was claimed by Islamic State, could further escalate sectarian strife in the kingdom, where anti-Shi’ite sentiment has been stoked by a military campaign against Iranian-allied Houthi militias in neighboring Yemen since March.
The Interior Ministry said a suicide bomber disguised in women’s clothes blew himself up outside the al-Anoud mosque’s entrance in the city of Dammam during noon prayers.
Witnesses said a suicide bomber, who wore an Abaya used by women in Saudi Arabia, blew himself up in the mosque’s parking lot when guards searching worshippers became suspicious of him.
The ministry said four people, including the bomber, were killed in the blast, which also set several cars ablaze.