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Saudi Security Forces Arrest Gunman in Oil-Rich East, SPA Says

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Sept. 16 (Bloomberg) -- Saudi security forces arrested three men in the al-Qatif area in the country’s Eastern Province, including one wanted for an attack on a police patrol last month, the official Saudi Press Agency said, citing an unidentified Interior Ministry spokesman.

Hussain al-Muslim was detained at a house yesterday where he was hiding from police, the news service said, citing the Interior Ministry statement. He was accused of being involved in a shooting in August that killed First Class Private Hosein Ali Zabani and wounded First Class Private Saad Miteb Mohammad Al Shammari, it said.

Gunmen on motorcycles attacked the officers’ patrol in the al-Qatif area, the Saudi Press Agency reported on Aug. 4. Security forces exchanged gunfire with the armed men and arrested four attackers, one of whom died while being taken to a hospital, the news service said last month, citing the Interior Ministry.

While Sunni-majority Saudi Arabia largely avoided the unrest that spread across the Arab world last year, minority Shiite protesters have clashed with security forces in the village of Awwamiya, al-Qatif, and other eastern towns. In July, security forces arrested dissident Shiite cleric Nimr al-Nimr in the al-Qatif area.

Hassan al-Darweesh and Hassan al-Mubaireek, who were also wanted by the police, were taken into custody yesterday, the news service said. None of the police personnel were injured during the raid, it said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Glen Carey in Riyadh at gcarey8@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Andrew J. Barden at barden@bloomberg.net

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