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The spokesman for Saudi Arabia's Interior Ministry says a militant bomb attack has killed a security officer and wounded six others in a predominantly Shiite town in the kingdom's restive eastern province.

Maj. Gen. Mansour al-Turki says in a statement, which was released on Sunday evening, that the attack targeted a security patrol in the morning hours in the al-Mosawara district in the heavily Shiite-populated governorate of Qatif.

He says the wounded men are in stable condition in hospital and that an investigation is underway into this "terrorist crime."

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Violence between Shiite militants and security forces in the province has increased in recent weeks, with several incidents of militants firing rocket-propelled grenades at police and attacking officers.

Also, the Islamic State group has previously launched attacks on Shiites in Qatif.

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