RIYADH (GN) - Eight members of a “terrorist” cell were killed on Saturday in a police raid in Saudi Arabia´s eastern Qatif region, a Shiite minority stronghold, state media reported.

The recently-formed cell was preparing to carry out “terrorist” activities against the security of the country, the official Saudi Press Agency reported citing a state security spokesman.

He said the men were killed after they fired shots at security forces, who had surrounded a residential apartment in the Sanabis neighbourhood.

“They were called on to surrender, but they did not respond and opened fire at the security forces... which resulted in their killing,” said the spokesman.No civilians or security forces were injured in the operation, he added.Saudi Arabia´s Eastern Province -- which includes Qatif -- has seen bouts of unrest since 2011 when protesters emboldened by the Arab Spring uprisings took to the streets.