Saudi police stand guard in front of demonstrators in the Qatif region of the Eastern Province. (File photo)
Security forces in Saudi Arabia have killed three demonstrators in the country’s Eastern Province, which has been a major scene of anti-regime protests over the past months.
The Riyadh regime forces opened fire on a demonstration in the Qatif region of the province on Sunday.
Two of the victims were identified as Akbar Hassan Shakhouri and Mohammedredha Felfel, who were among the protesters demonstrating against the detention of prominent Shia cleric Sheikh Nemr al-Nemr, who was attacked in his car upon arrest earlier in the day.
Several other protesters were also injured in the deadly incident.
Since February 2011, protesters have held demonstrations on an almost regular basis in Saudi Arabia, mainly in Qatif and the town of Awamiyah in the Eastern Province, calling for the release of all political prisoners, freedom of expression and assembly, and an end to widespread discrimination.
However, the demonstrations have turned into protests against the Al Saud regime, especially since November 2011, when Saudi security forces killed five protesters and injured many others in the Eastern Province.
Similar demonstrations have also been held in the capital, Riyadh, and the holy city of Medina over the past few weeks.
The Saudi Interior Ministry issued a statement on March 5, 2011, prohibiting “all forms of demonstrations, marches or protests, and calls for them.”
According to the Human Rights Watch, the Saudi regime “routinely represses expression critical of the government.”