Saturday, 30 May 2020

E East

Saturday, 07 March 2020 19:43

Saudi Arabia, the death of a king or the inauguration of a king?

Saudi Arabia, noise in the land of the Two Holy Saudi Arabia, noise in the land of the Two Holy

Saudi Arabia, Amid reports attributed to the Qatar-based Al-Jazeera channel about the death of King Salman Abdul-Aziz, there were press reports saying that he, the king, had personally signed the arrest warrant for three princes, due to the attempted coup.

Reuters quoted sources described by al-Mutlaqa as saying that Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman "accused the three detainees, Prince Ahmed bin Abdulaziz, Prince Muhammad bin Nayef and his son, of making contact with foreign powers to carry out a coup."

The Wall Street Journal published news of the detention of Prince Ahmed bin Abdulaziz and Prince Muhammad bin Nayef, and said that this was linked to an alleged coup attempt.

According to expectations, it appears that the dissatisfaction raised by Prince Muhammad bin Salman between some of the prominent branches of the ruling family due to the tightening of his grip on power, some members of the ruling family are seeking to change the arrangement of inheriting the throne, considering that Prince Ahmed is one of the possible options that can be supported by family members and the security services and some Western powers.

Reuters quoted Western Saudis and Western diplomats as saying it was unlikely that the royal family would oppose the crown prince during the life of King Salman, 84, knowing that the king was unlikely to turn against his son.

Note that the Saudi king delegated most of the responsibilities of government to his son, but he still chairs weekly meetings of the Council of Ministers and receives foreign guests.

On the other hand, a "mujtahid" account on Twitter mentioned that the arrests may be an indication that "the king died or is dying," noting that "the detainees are in the family by dozens, not just Ahmed and the children of Nayef."

He stressed that "the staff at the Diwan, the palace and the Royal Guard were informed that the king could not be reached for health reasons."

According to "mujtahid", "bin Salman intends to announce a statement attributed to the king to step down and his appointment as king", and "mujtahid" is satisfied with that, pledging to publish more details later.

Prince Muhammad bin Salman, the Saudi crown prince, has moved to consolidate his authority since he assumed the crown prince after excluding his cousin, Prince Muhammad bin Nayef in 2017.

Prince Muhammad detained several members of the ruling family in what he claimed was an "anti-corruption campaign" later that year.

The latest detention comes at a time of heightened tension with Iran and with Prince Muhammad bin Salman implementing strange social and economic changes to Saudi Arabia, including an initial public offering of Saudi oil giant Saudi Aramco on the local stock exchange in December 2019.

The prince has received widespread international criticism for the devastating war in Yemen, the killing of Khashoggi and the detention of activists defending women's rights as part of a crackdown on dissent.

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