Soldier shot dead in Saudi Arabia clashes

Soldier shot dead in Saudi Arabia clashes

PanARMENIAN.Net - A soldier has been shot dead and another injured during a clash with protesters in eastern Saudi Arabia, according to state media.

An interior ministry spokesman said that a security patrol was fired at by rioters on a motorbike in Qatif.

A protester was also killed in a firefight following the incident, according to news agency AFP.

The oil-rich Eastern Province is home to a Shia majority that has long complained of marginalisation.

Speaking to state media, Interior Ministry spokesman Mansour al-Turki said the shooting took place at 11pm on Friday evening.

"A security patrol was exposed to heavy fire from four armed rioters on a motorbike when pausing at a street intersection in Qatif", he is reported to have said.

He named the dead soldier as Hussein Bawah Ali Zabani and the wounded soldier, who was taken to hospital, as Saad Miteb Mohammed al-Shammari.

AFP quotes Mansour al-Turki as saying a "rioter" had been killed in a firefight following the incident.

Last week, state media said security forces detained a number of protesters in Qatif after tyres were set on fire during an overnight demonstration.

Protests erupted in the region in March 2011 when a popular uprising in neighbouring Bahrain, which has a Shia majority and a Sunni royal family, was crushed with the assistance of Saudi and other Gulf troops.

 Top stories
The launch would be in defiance of repeated warnings by governments who suspect it is a banned test of ballistic missile technology.
Carter said he looked forward to discussing the offer of ground troops with the Saudi Defense Minister in Brussels next week.
The meeting takes place as talks have begun in Geneva to try to end the five-year Syrian civil war, which has killed at least 250,000 people.
"There is no denial that we are dealing with very significant risks," he said, during a visit to the World Economic Forum in Davos.
Partner news