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Dozens injured in Saudi train derailment

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The derailment of a passenger train in Saudi Arabia has left at least 35 people injured, two of them critically, a railway official and medical sources said.

The train derailed on Wednesday just east of the capital Riyadh as it was heading to the eastern city of Dammam, they said.

Hamad Abdel Qader, deputy chief of operations at the Saudi Railways Organisation, told the AFP news agency that the train derailed "100km east of Riyadh".

A statement by the state-owned company put the location of the accident at 70km away from Riyadh, which would make it almost the same location where another passenger train derailed two years ago causing minor injuries to the train’s conductors.

Wednesday’s train was carrying 332 passengers and an investigation is under way to determine the cause of the accident.

There were "no deaths in the accident ... but several" people were wounded, including one man who was evacuated to Riyadh for medical treatment, said Abdel Qader.

The train was travelling along Saudi Arabia's only passenger rail link, about 400km long, that connects Riyadh and Dammam, a coastal city in the vast desert kingdom's oil-rich Eastern province.


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