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An Inside Look at Saudi Forces Clearing a Shiite Village

MIN READAug 17, 2017 | 13:13 GMT

The images of al-Awamiyah reveal clear and profound destruction wrought by the government’s leveling of structures in the district.

The images of al-Awamiyah reveal the clear and profound destruction wrought by the government's leveling of structures in the district.

(Stratfor)

One of the most strategically significant areas of Saudi Arabia is its Eastern Province. Most of the country's oil and natural gas resources are clustered there, and the region borders all of the kingdom's Gulf Cooperation Council allies (including some mired in disputes with Riyadh, such as Qatar). Moreover, the province is culturally significant since it is home to most of Saudi Arabia's Shiites, who make up about 10 to 15 percent of the country's total population. Shiite activism advocating greater autonomy and recognition of rights is commonplace in the area. And while these activities are mostly peaceful, there are small militant cells in the region that have sought to violently buck the government's control....

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