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Two Killed After Saudi Shi'ite Cleric Arrested

Saudi Arabia has announced the deaths of two men following protests in the eastern Shi'ite region.

An Interior Ministry statement said the deaths followed a protest in the village of Awamiya over the arrest of Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr.

The statement said there was no clash between protesters and police.

Earlier, the official Saudi Press Agency said the sheikh was detained after he and followers exchanged fire with security forces on July 8 and crashed into a patrol vehicle.

It said Nimr, who was wounded in the leg, faces charges of instigating unrest in the oil-rich Eastern Province.

Awamiya has been the site of past clashes between security forces and Shi'a, who complain of discrimination at the hands of Saudi Arabia's Sunni monarchy.

Based on reporting by Reuters, AFP, and AP

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