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Last Updated: Thursday, 21 April, 2005, 20:46 GMT 21:46 UK
Four killed in Mecca gun battle
Map of Saudi Arabia indicating location of Mecca
A gunfight on the edge of the Saudi city of Mecca has left two militants and two members of the security forces dead, Saudi officials say.

The group of four militants, some disguised as women, are said to have failed to stop at a checkpoint.

They were pursued by the security forces, and the gun battle ensued. One militant was shot and arrested.

The clashes took place hours after voting ended in the country's first nationwide elections.

These included polls in Mecca and Medina, the two holiest cities in Islam.

It is unclear if the fighting was connected with the voting.

Male voters were electing half the members of municipal councils in a third round of voting.

Many Saudis hope the vote marks a step towards wider political reform.


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