Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 19 October 2019

Saudi King Salman's bodyguard killed during dispute

Police say Maj Gen Abdulaziz Al Fagham was shot in Jeddah after argument with a friend

A personal bodyguard of Saudi Arabia's King Salman was shot and killed by a friend after a dispute, police said on Sunday.

Maj Gen Abdulaziz Al Fagham was fatally shot at the home of a friend in Jeddah, according to a statement from the Makkah police department.

Police said Al Fagham was visiting his friend Turki Al Sabti when a mutual friend named Mamdouh Bin Mishaal Al Ali arrived. Al Ali left the house after an argument with Al Fagham but returned later with a gun and shot him. He also wounded Mr Al Sabti and a Filipino employee, police said.

Al Ali was killed during a gunfight with members of the security forces who arrived at the house, five of whom were injured, the state-run Saudi Press Agency reported.

Al Fagham died of his injuries in hospital.

It was not clear when the incident took place.

Tributes poured in for the bodyguard on social media, with many including pictures of him at work. One showed him bending down to apparently help tie the shoes of King Salman.

Others show Al Fagham at events with both King Salman and his predecessor, the late King Abdullah.

"May you rest in peace, hero," senior Saudi royal court adviser Turki Al Sheikh tweeted.

Gun crimes are rare in Saudi Arabia. According to the UN Office on Drugs and Crime, in 2017 there were 419 reported homicides among its population of about 30 million.

Updated: September 29, 2019 05:08 PM

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