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Arabic press review: Palestinians 'tortured by foreigners' in Saudi Arabia, Hamas says

Meanwhile, Jordan has thwarted an Islamic State plot, and an Israeli delegation heads to a security conference in Bahrain
Hamas middleman Mohammed Saleh al-Khoudary, and his eldest son Hani have been in a Saudi prison since April (Screengrab)

Hamas leader in the Gaza Strip Sami Abu Zuhri has told the Shehab News agency that Palestinian detainees in Saudi Arabia, including leaders of the movement, are being tortured by "foreign mercenaries".

"Unfortunately, the detainees are being harshly interrogated, and some of them are being tortured in various forms. They are being interrogated by foreign investigators of different nationalities," said Abu Zuhri.

He added that "this is shameful to Saudi Arabia", which recently arrested about 60 Palestinians residing in the kingdom, including Hamas representative Mohammed Saleh al-Khoudary and businessman Abu Obeida Agha, who was transferred to Dhahban Central Prison in Jeddah.

"The arrest of about 60 detainees, some of whom are members or supporters of Hamas, others who have spent more than three decades in the kingdom, and another part of whom have contributed to the building and reconstruction of the country, is shocking, because what happened is unjustified and incomprehensible," Abu Zuhri said.

He said Hamas had made contact with several Saudi officials, but that this "did not result in anything until now", stressing that the movement "will not be reassured until this crisis reaches an end".

Middle East Eye has contacted the Saudi authorities for comment.

Israeli delegation attends security conference in Bahrain

Bahrain is hosting an international meeting to "discuss the maritime and air navigation security in the region and ways to deter the Iranian threat", with the presence of an Israeli delegation, London-based newspaper al-Quds al-Arabi quoted the Bahraini foreign ministry as saying.

According to the ministry, more than 60 countries are participating in the two-day event, which began on Monday.

Bahrain says the meeting came out of the controversial International Conference to Support Security and Peace in the Middle East, which was held in the Polish capital Warsaw, in February.

Like that conference, the Bahrain meeting intends to look at "ways to deter the Iranian threat and ensure freedom of navigation in the region, in light of Tehran's practices that pose a major threat to maritime and air navigation," according to the Gulf island's foreign ministry.

Jordan thwarts Islamic State plot

Jordan's security services have arrested a cell of five Islamic State group (IS) supporters who were planning to carry out attacks inside the country, according to al-Rai

The government-owned newspaper said the suspects were arrested in July but referred to a Jordanian military court a few days ago, and it has seen the indictment issued against them.

Among the targets that the cell intended to attack, as stated in the indictment, were security guards in front of the house of a former prime minister and the seizure of their weapons, in addition to the police patrols stationed on the external roads.

The would-be attackers were also reportedly planning to kidnap and kill an intelligence officer in an abandoned area and burn his body, according to the newspaper.

The five defendants appeared before the State Security Court on Sunday at the first hearing session of the case and denied the charges.