Grenade kills Saudi policeman in Shiite town: ministry

Dubai (AFP) - A Saudi Arabian police officer was killed by a rocket-propelled grenade on Tuesday in a Shiite town, the interior ministry said, as deadly fighting escalated.

The interior ministry said a member of the special police emergency forces died when "a rocket-propelled grenade (was) launched from inside the neighbourhood" and hit his patrol unit in the Almosara area of Awamiya.

"Five others were injured and taken to hospital," it said.

The officer is at least the third person killed in the Gulf coast town of Awamiya since last Wednesday.

The unrest centres on Awamiya's old Almosara district, which is the site of a redevelopment project.

"It's really war," said an area resident who reported his home has been shaken by explosions

in the past two days.

On Friday the ministry said a two-year-old boy and a Pakistani died when gunmen from within Almosara opened fire on passersby, security officers and workers on the project.

Residents gave a higher toll.