Friday, March 25, 2011

Hundreds of Shiites protest in east Saudi Arabia

CAIRO (AP) - A Saudi news agency says several hundred Shiite Muslims have held protests in eastern Saudi Arabia to demand the release of detainees and show support for fellow Shiites protesting against the Sunni monarchy in nearby Bahrain.

The Shiite news agency Rasid says protesters waving Bahraini flags marched in two cities in the province of Qatif.

The report says protesters called on the Saudi government to withdraw its troops from Bahrain, where they are leading a 1,500-strong Gulf military force helping shore up the Sunni monarchy.

Saudi's minority Shiites have long complained of discrimination and say they are barred from key positions in the military and government and are denied an equal share of the country's wealth.

They are 10 percent of the kingdom's 23 million citizens.



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