Shocking Footage Of Saudi Siege Against Own Citizens

Tyler Durden's picture

The Saudi regime is in the midst of an extreme and brutal crackdown against its own citizenry in the country's Eastern province - a situation now spiraling out of control with rising civilian deaths, entire neighborhoods turned to rubble, and new reports that water and electricity have been cut to the now completely besieged town of Al-Awamiya. Though local activists continue to upload shocking ground level videos to social media revealing that entire districts have been leveled, international and US media have remained largely silent.

Tensions have been simmering in the heavily Shia populated Qatif governate throughout the past year, especially after the January execution of prominent Shia cleric and Al-Awamiya native Nimr al-Nimr. Additionally, 14 Shia citizens, among them young Mujtaba al-Sweikat - a student enrolled at Western Michigan University - currently await execution upon the signature of King Salman. The torture and mass trial of the group, charged with "protest-related" crimes has further inflamed tensions in the region. Large protests against the Saudi monarchy and security services have been frequent in Qatif going all the way back to the start of the so-called "Arab Spring" - though major international media outlets have tended to ignore such protests occurring under US/UK friendly regimes.

This was especially the case when in 2011 hundreds of Saudi tanks crossed the King Fahd Causeway to quell a popular uprising against neighboring Bahrain's Sunni monarchy. Western media treated the event as a relatively minor hiccup, with some reports even subtly framing Saudi actions as actually motivated by the protection of civilians from Bahraini security forces, while in reality it was a massive show of force pitting tanks against civilians in order to preserve the embattled Bahraini autocratic regime.

This week, things have escalated dramatically as Saudi authorities have concentrated a barrage of fire on Awamiya's four-hundred year old walled historic Al-Mosara neighborhood, including reported use of air power, heavy artillery, RPGs, snipers and armored assault vehicles in the area. Earlier this year the Saudi regime announced plans to demolish the neighborhood and hand it over to private developers in a kind of Saudi version of "eminent domain"; however, the presence of Shia militants hiding amidst its narrow roads and concealed alleyways appears the be the real motive for razing the district. Though sporadic fighting has occurred throughout the summer, the siege began in the last week of July when bulldozers and armored vehicles poured into the town to initiate demolition while security forces simultaneously attempted to root out Shia militants. Multiple Middle East based news outlets reported at least 5 civilians killed during the initial entry of Saudi forces - online activist accounts are now reporting many dozens slain since the start of the recent incursion.

Screenshot of Al Mayadeen News broadcast footage purporting to show a Saudi soldier firing into Awamiya town from a rooftop.

Before and during the start of the siege local citizens were promised government-sponsored "relocation", though activists describe it as a concealed sectarian-based cleansing of the Shia population, which has been historically persecuted by the Sunni Wahhabi state. Regional news outlets have published footage which they say reveals active sectarian anti-Shia cleansing on the part of Saudi forces currently underway:

Photo purporting to show destruction in Awamiya. Photo source: Albawaba News citing activist social media.

An activist originally from Awamiya named Ameen Nemer told Middle East Eye that there is a conscious effort on the part of the authorities to forcibly change the identity of the town:

What I see from the first day there is a collective punishment... there is a plan for forced displacement. It has nothing to do with Al-Mosara and development, it has to do with punishing this town for being vocal for calling for rights, calling for reforms since 2011.

press release issued in May by the UN Human Rights Commission responded to previously announced Saudi plans to demolish residential areas for commercial development. The UN statement hints that the town's identity is indeed what is at stake here:

The UN experts warned the development plan for the Al-Masora quarter threatens the historical and cultural heritage of the town with irreparable harm, and may result in the forced eviction of numerous people from their businesses and residences.

UN experts seemed to have forewarned that the the whole initiative would involve forceful evacuation using extreme coercive measures, yet stopped short of condemning the plans outright:

Residents have been pressured in many ways, including through power cuts, to vacate their homes and businesses without adequate alternative resettlement options, leaving them at best with insufficient compensation and at worst, with nowhere to go...


It appears that the demolition has been announced without any meaningful consultation with the residents, and without having considered less damaging alternatives, like restoration, or adequate notice informing them about the demolition plans.

Gunfire as government bulldozers destroy civilian infrastructure: ground footage of Saudi authorities razing Shia neighborhoods in the country's eastern province. Some videos are reportedly being uploaded to personal social media pages by Saudi soldiers themselves to brag about their role in the siege, after which the footage is culled by opposition activists.

And now the assault has reached a violent crescendo. On Thursday Al-Masdr News reported that Saudi regime forces fired upon a civilian bus as it tried to flee Awamiya, killing the bus driver (other unconfirmed reports further mention the wounding of women and children). A Reuters report, however, presented conflicting accounts of the incident, while also attempting to justify the whole brutal siege of Awamiya merely as Saudi security attempting to apprehend "gunmen behind attacks on police." While details and the accuracy of various reports of atrocities are unclear, with activists citing dozens of civilians killed at the hands of the government and state-aligned media claiming Shia fighters have killed multiple police, lack of independent media access has made assessing the day to day situation difficult.

This week, Beirut-based Al Mayadeen News was the first Arabic language satellite broadcaster to feature video footage coming out of besieged Awamiya. The report references military jets flying over the town and shows a uniformed man firing an RPG into an urban area. Saudi opposition activists say the man is a Saudi soldier. View the report with English subtitles here:

Meanwhile, Middle East Eye has obtained a document which activists say is being placed on homes in and around the besieged town. It is a property seizure notice ordering residents to relocate and is stamped by the Saudi government's National Joint Counterterrorism Command (NJCC). It gives instructions on relocation procedures - Middle East Eye cited activists as saying displaced families have yet to be rehoused.

Requisition order stamped by the Saudi National Joint Counterterrorism Command (NJCC) and obtained by Middle East Eye.

Though still not widely reported in US press, the Canadian government has come under fire for providing armored military vehicles that the Saudis may be using in their crackdown against civilians. In 2013 Canada struck its own record breaking deal - worth over $13 billion - to supply Saudi Arabia with an undisclosed number of Light Armored Vehicles manufactured by General Dynamics Land Systems (GDLS).

Last week Canada's The Globe and Mail published an investigative report which found that, "video footage and photos have surfaced on social media allegedly showing the Islamic kingdom using Canadian weaponized equipment against Saudi civilians" specifically as part of the Awamiya assault which resulted in civilian deaths. The report confirmed, based on expert analysis, that Canadian vehicles are being used - though images analyzed showed Gurkha RPVs, made by Terradyne Armored Vehicles (based in Newmarket, Ontario) - and not the General Dynamics vehicles of the 2013 contract. It appears other private companies in Canada have been making their own deals with the Saudi government - all of which are now coming under scrutiny.

Footage out of Awamiya shows Canadian made armored vehicles in civilian neighborhoods.

The report prompted a response by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau: "We are looking at these claims very seriously... and have immediately launched a review". Various Canadian parliamentarians have urged the current Liberal government to cancel the contract on the grounds that it allegedly violates Canada's weapons export-control rules. Rights monitoring groups also weighed in. Amnesty International Canada secretary-general Alex Neve called on the government to stop all armored vehicle exports, saying:

Indications that Canadian-made armored vehicles are perhaps being utilized as Saudi forces mobilize in the east of the country highlight how crucial it is that the government intervene and put an immediate end to the Canadian/Saudi LAV deal.

The US and UK remain Saudi Arabia's largest suppliers of advanced weaponry and have a long history of turning a blind eye to human rights abuses. Ironically, the kingdom's increasingly restive Shia population is concentrated in an eastern region which produces much of the world's oil. In 2012, a pipeline explosion possibly at the hands of Shia militants in the same region, caused the price of crude to momentarily rocket upward on fears that the "Arab Spring" had entered the oil-rich province.

It's been widely acknowledged that since Saudi Arabia's founding, Shia citizens have been marginalized on religious grounds by the official Wahhabi state religion which sees them as heretics in league with Iranian interests, especially since the 1979 Islamic Revolution. Saudi Shia communities have been perpetual historic flashpoint areas witnessing cycles of protests, shootings, mass detentions, and long-term economic neglect. Demonstrations have long been banned throughout all of Saudi Arabia - a fact rarely highlighted in Western press reports. 

Currently, unconfirmed reports issued by Iran-aligned media claim Yemeni opposition fighters have sacked Saudi bases and small outposts in the southwestern Jizan region, inflicting troop casualties on Saudi soil for the first time. While Qatif in the east spirals out of control, blowback from Saudi Arabia's two year long air war on Yemen is looking increasingly likely.

As we've reported recently in Saudi Arabia’s March Towards Civil War combined tensions and fissures at multiple levels of the Saudi state, including within the royal family itselfare nearing a breaking point. Could this latest round of extreme measures against Shia dissent - which appear increasingly desperate and are now going public - mark the beginning of a permanently fractured kingdom?

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barysenter's picture

Remember Waco? OKC? 911? Heard about the ADL infiltrating the FBI and conducting false flag attacks, bombing black churches in the 60-70s, killing Americans? And staging Nazi marches in jewish communities to get contributions? Mena? Arkancide? It's already happening. Baa

Whatta's picture

The world is falling apart....and we, The Greatest Nation In The History Of The Universe...bear a lot of the blame.

Ego, power and money.

Mimir's picture

 "The Greatest Nation In The History Of The Universe" - oh ! please stop this drunken nonsense.

peopledontwanttruth's picture

It's becoming more evident Satan's house is dividing on every level. Only then can the strong man be binded up said Christ.

Blood is thicker than water.

BigCumulusClouds's picture

If you know anyone who thinks the Saudis did 911, just show them this:

Clearly the Saudis could not have blown up the WTC buildings on 911.

RougeUnderwriter's picture

The City of Baltimore declared a Cease Fire - the motto is Nobody Kill Anybody today. Can't make this up

Go O's

silverer's picture

Will be interesting to see if the decline numbers are single digits or not.

Guderian's picture

Blue Helmets being deployed, or White Helmets?

The_Central_Scrutinizer's picture

Fuck The Dindus. Never Stop the Enemy When He's Making a Mistake.

MillionDollarButter's picture

These desert shitholes are all in overshoot. Wile E. Coyote running on air.

harrybrown's picture

the masses will not be stopped once the uprising reaches "critical mass",
in the case of the American revolution, critical mass was just 3%
and the elites would rather you didnt know this, esp knowing we've got them outnumber'd 1000/1+

silverer's picture

Attention rebels: immediately move the war to the rich neighborhoods.

Lumberjack's picture

Only on the ones that listen to NPR.

barysenter's picture

Oh, you mean where the surveillance cameras actually work, where they have posted guards and the cops' response time is under 2 minutes, when the roving patrol isn't right on top of you already? Those are the neighborhoods they actual do patrol. Not yours, you police paycheck providing taxpaying prole. Great plan, hamburger.

Pernicious Gold Phallusy's picture

If Canada supplies arms and equipment, it must be OK.

AlphaSeraph's picture

Harper converted our military and foreign policy from peace keeping missions and aid into US style "adventurism". Feckless fembot Trudeau has taken that new policy and put it on steroids. 

Listening to "Liberals" in this country fawn over Trudeau is neauseating. He's a vapid globalist puppet who does the **horrifying** bid of his handlers and owners. 

johnnycanuck's picture

C'mon now, that's not entirely accurate.  Harper liked to play Warrior Prince until da base turned against the Afghanistan involvement and that matter of the lone gunman attack on Parliament Hill when Warrior Steve hid in the closet and left the women and cripples outside to fend for themselves.

Trudie baby is just a hipster member of the go along to get along gang.  He had 4 main things going for him,

He isn't Harper

His boyish smile which the ladies love

The cutesy lithp that makes the girls swoon

Listened to his handlers and let Mulcair blow himself up in Quebec over Harper's niqab dog whistle issue




Pernicious Gold Phallusy's picture

This is also the logical outcome of Kelso and could happen in the US.

Grimaldus's picture

Propaganda article. Written by Iranian c**ksuckers.

This is a Sunni verses Shia fight. Saudi verses Iran in other words.

I do not care what they do there but ban ALL of them from coming here, they are not compatible in the least and very hostile at worst.

I want zero American intervention in the ME and zero US taxpayer yellin bux spent there or anywhere but the USA.

F**k Islam, let them kill each other all they want. We will do good business with whomever is left standing.













The_Central_Scrutinizer's picture

Fuck Islam and the al-buraq it flew in on.


May Poop Be Upon Him.

PontifexMaximus's picture

as long as it is not dammam or dhahran, everything is fine, nothing to see here

silverserfer's picture

they must be infadels. 

Robert Trip's picture

"The only good towelhead is a dead towelhead.

Carry on."


Grandpa Trip.

AlphaSeraph's picture

The Royal House of Saud are worth less then pig shit. Every last one of them will burn in hell. Disgusting animals that I wouldn't piss on if they were on fire.  

Arrest Hillary's picture

"If your enemies are making fools of themselves .... get out of the way !"  Zionist Committee To Advance The Arab Spring

redmudhooch's picture

We should invite some of these guys that the Saudis are killing and blowing their shit up over here to the USA.

They would surely make outstanding and loyal citizens.

kindasketchy's picture

Maybe Wolf Blitzer can explain to Canada how many jobs are created by selling weapons to Saudi Arabia.

directaction's picture

For perspective: The USA burns about 20 mb/d of oil of which only one mb/d is imported from Saudi Arabia.

The USA would be fino without Saudi oil.

No US intervention! Let the House of Saud collapse. It'd be good for the world.   

redmudhooch's picture

Correction, it would be good for 99.9% of the world, theres that little tiny place over there there though, it would be bad for them.

Fuck the world.

directaction's picture

That one bloodsucking cockroach country.
The chosen one all the Christians worship.

assistedliving's picture

1979, 2011, 2013 mixed in w/ current.  

What?  You think SA is domestic problem free?


barysenter's picture

Well replenish their stock with a million refugeescoundrels. They like slaves and know how to deal with them.

Able Ape's picture

Just for the record, WTF is America doing in the ME?  They're killing their own in addition to their enemies and we think we CAN help?  LMFAO......

One of We's picture

Ensuring oil is paid for with FRN funnymoney.

rejected's picture

We didn't invade to "Help".

AntiMatter's picture

When a military starts shooting their own citizenry, you know its game over for the ruling elite.

veritas semper vinces's picture

I'm waiting for the State Department to issue a statement condemning the Saudi Barbaria killing its own people. All that"human rights" blah,blah

InnVestuhrr's picture

I LOVE LOVE LOVE seeing the islamic cultist primitive sub-humans slaughter each other - THANK YOU !!!!!!!!!

voting machine's picture


Popcorn and beer time bruh...!!

Bobportlandor's picture

Well this explains the torch building going up in blazes.

Your oil is going to the moon Alice.


rejected's picture

Everywhere the West goes, Killing and mayhem ensues. 

stiler's picture

I think Islam is fully capable of self-destruction w/o the west's help. They will kill each other on ever finer points of religion.


are we there yet's picture

If an archeologist found a latrine used by mohammid they would fight wars over his holy sh_t. Then the winner would fight over who would get to eat his holy sh--. After eating it he would claim special holy S--- visions and fight with others over his H.S. visions.

roadhazard's picture

I'm all for raghead on raghead violence.

redmudhooch's picture

Man those Saudis are pioneers of human rights. Good to see em putting them weapons to good use.

You would think that after 1000's of years of killing and blowing each others shit up they would be burnt out on it by now.

Stories like this the Banksters wank off to.

voting machine's picture

Our wonferful allies for democracy and chair for the UN counsel on human rights.

Guess they are just explaining what rights they have in Al-Awamiya

The citizens must be having a hard time understanding

Is it their fault their education system failed them ?

Time for a cold beer

Have a feeling this is in very short supply in muzzy land...

Unless you're flying at 30,000 ft. with some skank hoes and little pizza boys

This gonna be fun...!

any_mouse's picture

Where are the cries that the House of Saud must go!

Frigging monarchy.

They need Democracy and they need it Now!

The USA should bomb the KSA into Democracy and the modern age.

Know where the actual oil reserves are in the Arabian peninsula?

Under the Shia populated areas.

This conflict has been in the wind for a some time.

Instead the USA will bomb Iran.