Drug traffickers shot dead two Saudi border guards in the south of the country before abandoning their haul of hashish and fleeing back to Yemen, the official Saudi news agency SPA reported today. The smugglers, numbering about 15, defied an order to withdraw to Yemeni territory and opened fire on a border patrol near Asir late last night, it said, citing a spokesman for the guards. They were later "forced to withdraw" and 500 kilogrammes of hashish was seized.
The lengthy, porous border with Yemen is a regular headache for Saudi Arabia, whose forces often seize large amounts of drugs, illicit alcohol and weapons being smuggled into the kingdom. * AFP