23 January 2018
AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook
Geographic areas




  • > Africa
  • > Central Asia
  • > Europe
  • > Middle East
  • > Nord America
  • > North Asia
  • > South Asia
  • > South East Asia
  • > South West Asia
  • > Sud America
  • > East Asia


  • » 11/06/2017, 11.41

    SAUDI ARABIA

    Riyadh, bin Salman consolidates power by arresting dozens of princes and ministers



    The heir to the throne has led one of the most impressive purges against the Kingdom’s political and entrepreneurial class. Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, the richest person in the Arab world, also targeted. Charges of corruption . The long Saudi hand behind the resignation of Lebanese Prime Minister Hariri.

    Riyadh (AsiaNews / Agencies) - The heir to the Saudi ruler Mohammed bin Salman, number two in the country, has consolidated his leadership over the weekend leading the most impressive purge of the Saudi political and business class ever. The new Anti-Corruption Commission, set up by the future monarch in person, ordered the arrest of 11 princes of the royal family, four serving ministers, and dozens of other former ministers.

    At the same time King Salman imposed the replacement of the head of the National Guard, Prince Miteb bin Abdullah, and Military Navy Admiral Abdullah bin Sultan bin Mohammed Al-Sultan. At present there are no official explanations for the decision, which seems to fall within the current leadership’s tightening of its hold on power.

    The arrests – which have  shocked the Saudi society, little used to sudden changes - were ordered by the powerful and infant anti-corruption commission set up by the 32-year-old hereditary prince. It has the authority to issue arrest warrants and impose travel restrictions and expulsion orders.

    The arrested include Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, a Saudi billionaire considered to be the richest person in the Arab world with a personal wealth of $ 18.7 billion. The 62-year-old media tycoon is one of the country's few personalities to have voted in June at the Covenant Council meeting against the promotion of Mohammed bin Salman as prime minister.

    He has shares in Citigroup, Twitter, Lyft and Time Warner through his Kingdom Holding company. In 2015, in the US election campaign, he had defined the current president - and then Republican candidate - Donald Trump a "disgrace".

    Among those arrested are also former Finance Minister Ibrahim al-Assaf, Economy Minister Adel Fakieh, former governor of Riyadh Turki bin Abdullah and Bakr bin Laden, president of Binladin Group, a giant of Saudi construction.

    According to Saudi TV Al-Arabiya reports, there were a series of investigations into Jeddah floods in 2009 and the MERS epidemic that struck Saudi Arabia in 2012. However, analysts and experts agree these measures are of a "political" nature and the hereditary prince is actually attempting to "consolidate his leadership".

    Mohammed bin Salman is considered to be the power behind the throne – held at a nominal level by his father, the 81-year-old king Salman.  He is operating the levers of power, from defense to economy. The recent nuclear energy breakthrough is just one of the many reforms initiated by the hereditary prince in the context of the "Vision 2030" program: Reforms include allowing women to drive and go to stadiums, as well as promoting an open and moderate Islam.

    He is very popular among young Saudis, but older and more conservative generations consider that he is moving too fast. In foreign policy, he is chiefly responsible for the expensive and ruinous war in Yemen, which has been dragging on for more than two years without any significant militaristic results. Added to this is the boycott against the nearby Qatar and the escalation of tension with the region's historic rival, Shiite Iran. By contrast, supporters are applauding the country's modernization promoted by a young leader, after decades of elderly leaders.

    Finally, Riyadh is also reportedly behind the resignation of Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri (Sunni), guilty of having completed a government deal with Hezbollah, the Shiite movement near Tehran. In justifying his decision to resign, Hariri spoke of a "very similar atmosphere to that which reigned shortly before the assassination of Prime Minister Martyr Rafik Hariri," Saad's father.

    e-mail this to a friend Printable version










    See also

    22/05/2017 09:07:00 IRAN-SAUDI ARABIA
    Zarif: Trump 'pumping' Saudi Arabian money

    Teheran's first reaction to the speech by the US President in Riyadh, in front of 35 heads of state. For Trump and King Salman Iran "supports, arms and trains terrorists, militias." Contracts signed between US and Saudi for about $ 400 billion in arms supplies and security.



    04/03/2009 EGYPT - SAUDI ARABIA
    Saudi minister calls for joint strategy to confront "Iranian challenge"
    Iran's nuclear program is a threat for the entire Middle East. The concerns of the Arab League over the possible openness of the U.S. government to talks with Tehran. Secretary Clinton reassures Arab partners and promises in-depth consultations.

    24/11/2017 10:06:00 SYRIA – SAUDI ARABIA - UN
    Syrian opposition sends united delegation to UN talks in Geneva

    The announcement came on the second day of ongoing meetings in Riyadh. There are 140 opposition leaders. The goal is to find unity in view of the new round of peace talks, scheduled for 28 November. But Assad's fate continues to be a source of division.



    02/11/2016 11:16:00 LEBANON
    President Michel Aoun: A new edition of the "Lebanese miracle"

    The election welcomed by Europe and the United State. Welcomed by the Maronite Patriarchate and the Churches of Syria. The result of a "historic compromise" that was able to unite the different souls of the country. Aoun will have to demonstrate "wisdom" and not eliminate other political forces.



    04/11/2017 14:50:00 SAUDI ARABIA – IRAN
    Riyadh wants to mine uranium ore to strengthen its nuclear programme

    For the Saudis, this will lead to self-sufficiency. The goal is to diversify energy supplies. Contracts will be tendered by the end of 2018 for the first two reactors. For IAEA, Iran continues to fulfil its obligations under the nuclear agreement.





    Editor's choices

    CHINA – VATICAN
    The Vatican asks legitimate bishops to step aside in favour of illegitimate ones

    John Baptist Lin

    Last December, Mgr Peter Zhuang Jianjian of Shantou (Guangdong) was forced to go to Beijing where "a foreign prelate" from the Vatican asked him to leave his see to illicit bishop Joseph Huang Bingzhang. He had received the same request last October. Mgr Joseph Guo Xijin, ordinary bishop of Mindong, is expected to become the auxiliary or coadjutor of illicit Bishop Vincent Zhan Silu. Sinicizing the Chinese Church means supporting the principle of independence and follow the leadership of the Communist Party.


    VATICAN - PERU
    Pope in Peru: Young people, the heart can’t be “photoshopped”, because that’s where real love is found



    At the Angelus in the Plaza de Armas, Pope Francis calls on young people to follow Jesus with all of themselves, without discouragement, in the example of St. Martin of Porres, the half-caste saint. Silent prayer for peace in the Republic of the Congo. To the bishops, the example of St. Turibius of Mogrovejo, an indefatigable evangelizer: "Today we would call him a 'street bishop'". To the contemplative religious the invitation to pray for the unity of the Peruvian Church.


    AsiaNews IS ALSO A MONTHLY!

    AsiaNews monthly magazine (in Italian) is free.
     

    SUBSCRIBE NOW

    News feed

    Canale RSSRSS channel 









     

    IRAN 2016 Banner

    2003 © All rights reserved - AsiaNews C.F. e P.Iva: 00889190153 - GLACOM®