Reuters International

Saudi firefighters extinguish a burning car used by suspected militants who shot dead four Westerners in an attack in the Red Sea port of Yanbu May 1, 2004. REUTERS/Stringer CRB

(reuters_tickers)

RIYADH (Reuters) - A man has been sentenced to death in Saudi Arabia for killing six Westerners and a Saudi soldier in an al Qaeda attack in the city of Yanbu in 2004, local media reported on Tuesday.

The shooting at Swiss engineering firm ABB Lummus Global and a subsequent police chase killed two Americans, two Britons, one Canadian, one Australian and one Saudi. Three of the four attackers also died.

Reports in the pan-Arab daily al-Hayat and other media did not name the man but said he had assisted in the assault in Yanbu, an oil and petrochemicals hub on the Red Sea.

At the time, the only surviving attacker was named as Saudi national Mustafa al-Ansari. The other three were all members of the same family.

Reuters could not immediately contact the kingdom's Justice Ministry spokesman for comment on the case.

Al Qaeda carried out a campaign of shootings and bombings against Western and state targets in the kingdom from 2003-2006, killing hundreds of people.

Saudi Arabia subsequently stamped out the insurgency and has since sentenced hundreds of convicted militants to prison terms or death. It executed dozens of them on January 2.

Human rights groups say Saudi Arabia's justice system is flawed and that its campaign against Islamist militants has also been used to suppress peaceful dissent.

Saudi Arabia says its legal system is fair and independent.

Since 2014, al Qaeda's ideological rival Islamic State has been staging attacks in the kingdom, killing dozens, resulting in hundreds of arrests.

(Reporting By Angus McDowall; Editing by Sami Aboudi and Raissa Kasolowsky)

reuters_tickers

 Reuters International