On May 6, the Saudi Interior Ministry announced the discovery of a jihadist group in Saudi Arabia linked to the so-called Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS). The newly discovered group sought to restart armed action in Saudi Arabia, and it was linked to ISIS in Syria and had contacts with al-Qaeda in Yemen. The group was collecting donations, coordinating the smuggling of individuals and weapons, and preparing to resume assassinations and bombings in Saudi Arabia, according to the ministry statement.
The statement clearly points to ISIS in Syria and its relationship to groups that are targeting Saudi internal security. This reveals Saudi concern about the growing and rising influence of al-Qaeda, in its multiple groupings, on the kingdom’s northern border with both Syria and Iraq, and on the southern border with Yemen. The Syrian and Yemeni fronts have become safe havens for al-Qaeda in its two conflicting branches: Jabhat al-Nusra and ISIS.