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Middle East

Saudi border guard killed in clashes near Yemen

A member of the Saudi security forces stands guard during a military parade in preparation for the annual haj pilgrimage in the holy city of Mecca October 9, 2013. REUTERS/Ibraheem Abu Mustafa

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia's Interior Ministry says two Saudi border guards have been killed by unidentified gunmen who fired shots from inside Yemen.

The nearly 932 mile-long (1500 kilometers) border is frequently crossed by migrants seeking work in the kingdom, as well as militants and drug traffickers. Saudi Arabia says its forces arrested more than 3,700 people trying to illegally cross from Yemen in February and March.

Interior Ministry Spokesman Mansour al-Turki said in a statement Thursday that the gunmen fired on the guards who were on border patrol in the southern Saudi province of Aseer.

He says the two sides exchanged gunfire after the guards came under heavy fire in the incident, which occurred early Wednesday.

The ministry identified the dead as Sgt. Abdul-Razek Al-Ghamdi and soldier Mohammed el-Qahtani.

 

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