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Two British Men Shot in Saudi Capital

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BBC cameraman Simon Cumbers has been killed and security correspondent Frank Gardner seriously injured in a gun attack in the Saudi capital, Riyadh.

Irishman Cumbers, 36, was a freelance journalist and cameraman while Gardner, 42, is the BBC's security correspondent and a leading expert on al-Qaeda.

Gardner underwent hours of surgery, after which he was critical but stable.

UK Prime Minister Tony Blair said his thoughts were with the families of the men attacked.

"This is a struggle against these terrorists who will kill innocent people who are involved in our democracy," Mr Blair told the BBC.

"We have seen since September 11th and Bali and Madrid that they are a threat in literally every part of the world and we have to be vigilant and get out and get after them and make sure we deal with this issue."

Suburb shooting

Riyadh's police chief said the attack was carried out by "unknown elements" on Sunday afternoon.

Nobody knew Saudi Arabia or knew the sort of risks they were undertaking better than Frank

The two men travelled to Saudi Arabia last week following terror attacks in the city of Khobar and were in the al-Suwaydi suburb of Riyadh with a Saudi government minder when the attack happened.

They were filming the house of an al-Qaeda militant killed last year when they came under fire.

The BBC's Paul Wood reports that the suburb is known as a militant stronghold and home to 15 of the 26 most wanted men in Saudi Arabia, including Abdul Aziz al-Muqrin, suspected leader of al-Qaeda in the kingdom.


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