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Last Updated: Sunday, 3 July, 2005, 10:25 GMT 11:25 UK
'Al-Qaeda chief' killed in Riyadh
Saudi security forces say they have killed the country's most wanted man, al-Qaeda's leader in the kingdom.

Moroccan-born Younis Mohammad Ibrahim al-Hayyari was killed in a shootout during a police raid on a suspected hideout in western Riyadh, they say.

Hayyari, who entered Saudi Arabia on a pilgrimage visa in 2001, topped a newly-issued list of 36 suspected militants wanted by Saudi authorities.

Saudi Arabia has suffered several terror attacks in recent years.

"He (Hayyari) was nominated by his peers, following the death of those preceding him, to be the head of sedition and corruption in the land," an unidentified interior ministry official told Saudi news agency SPA.

Security warning

He is believed to have had close ties to Karim al-Majati, an al-Qaeda leader killed in April 2005.

Six policemen were lightly wounded in the clash.

Al-Arabiya reported that two other militants had been injured in the overnight operation, but authorities would not confirm this.

There are also unconfirmed reports of several arrests.

Most of the suspects on the list issued last week are Saudis, but others are from Chad, Yemen, Morocco and Mauritania.

Only two militants on a previous list drawn up by Saudi authorities in December 2003 are still at large - all the others are believed killed or captured.

The shoot-out came shortly after UK Prime Minister Tony Blair ended a short visit to the country, stopping over on his way to Singapore.

A few days ago, Saudi Interior Minister Prince Nayef had warned of the possibility of more attacks.




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