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Three Britons injured in Saudi car blast

RIYADH, Saudi Arabia -- Three people have been injured in the second explosion in a week involving British nationals in Saudi Arabia.

A spokesman for the UK Foreign Office in London said all three were taken to hospital for treatment but their injuries were not thought to be life-threatening.

The blast happened as the car travelled down King Abdul Aziz street in the Saudi capital Riyadh, on Thursday.

The Foreign Office spokesman said it was too early to speculate on the cause of the explosion.

He told CNN.com: "We can confirm that there was a car explosion in Riyadh at 1.05 a.m. local time (2205 GMT) in which three British nationals were injured.

"None of the injuries are thought to be life-threatening. The cause of the explosion is not known."

He said British consular staff were trying to get access in hospital to the Britons -- two men and a woman.

The FO said the two men work for Al-Salam Aircraft Co, a Saudi firm half-owned by U.S. aircraft giant Boeing Co (BA.N), which is involved in modification and maintenance work on civilian and military aircraft imported from overseas.

Saudi's Okaz newspaper quoted Saudi Deputy Interior Minister Prince Ahmed bin Abdul Aziz as saying one of the men was in hospital with leg wounds, while the other and the woman were treated for minor injuries and discharged.

He told the paper that an investigation has started to determine if it was related to a blast that killed British national Christopher Rodway, 47, and slightly injured his wife, Jane, last Friday.

As a result of that incident Britain has advised its 26,000 nationals in Saudi to take extra security precautions, including keeping a low profile, avoiding crowded places and being careful when they parked their cars.

A spokeswoman for the British embassy in Riyadh said: "We need to be clear and know exactly what happened and as soon as we know we will be updating the travel advisory

"There will be a warden's advice to British citizens.That is under review now. We are working with the Saudi authorities to find out what happened."

Prince Ahmed said: "Security authorities have started their investigation to reveal the details of the case and to investigate any link to the previous incident, especially since circumstances were similar and so were the nationalities."

Saudi officials had said they believed personal motives rather than terrorism were behind Friday's blast which killed Rodway, chief engineer in the VIP section of the Military Hospital in Riyadh.

There has been no claim of responsibility for Friday's blast, which came five weeks after a bomb attack on the British embassy in Yemen.

Reuters contributed to this report.



RELATED STORIES:
Britons in Saudi Arabia warned be on guard
November 19, 2000
Motive for Saudi blast remains a mystery
November 18, 2000
One Briton killed, another hurt in Saudi explosion
November 17, 2000
Briton dies in Saudi blast
November 17, 2000

RELATED SITES:
UK Foreign & Commonwealth Office
British Embassy in Riyadh
Saudi Arabia Information Resource

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