Saudi troops kill ′suspected militants′ in Shiite town | News | DW | 20.12.2014
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Saudi troops kill 'suspected militants' in Shiite town

Security forces have killed four alleged terrorists in Saudi Arabia's Shiite-dominated Awamiya town. The inhabitants of the restive oil-rich region complain of discrimination and demand greater autonomy from Riyadh.

The suspects were killed during a military operation on Saturday. According to the country's interior ministry, the dead were behind the killing of a member of the security forces last Sunday.

"Four terrorists, including the primary suspect in the shooting of soldier Abdelaziz bin Ahmed al Assiri, were killed (during the Saturday shootout)," Saudi Arabia's state news agency, SPA, quoted the interior ministry's spokesman as saying.

Awamiya has been the center of a Shiite uprising against the Saudi monarchy since 2011. Twenty people have been killed during protests and attacks on security forces in the oil-rich area.

In February, clashes between the members of the Shiite community and security forces in Awamiya left two policemen and two activists dead.

The minority Shiite group complains of social and economic discrimination in the Sunni-Wahhabi country and demands democratic reforms. Riyadh denies these claims and accuses Shiite activists of working against the kingdom.

shs/tj (AFP, Reuters)

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