Members of the Saudi Royal Family Arrested, Suspected to be Part of A Coup
by Arthur F. Beaugeard
On Saturday, the Saudi’s Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman perpetrated a political purge which has been widely regarded as a vie for power. Prince Ahmed bin Abdul Aziz, former heir to the throne and full brother of King Salman, Prince Nawah bin Nayef, and Mohammed bin Nayef have been arrested on charges of organizing a coup, or an illegal seizure of supreme authority in a nation, against Mohammed bin Salman. Mohammed Bin Nayef has also been publicly embarrassed by a social media campaign started by the Crown Prince which falsely claims that he had become addicted to painkillers and other drugs.
Within Saudi Arabia, the public is pontificating on conflicting statements from Royal Court insiders and Saudi Officials on rumours of the king’s failing health, which has been cited as a reason for the alleged coup, however, even the idea of there being a real coup at all has been called into question. King Salman’s hold on the throne is certainly tenuous and being threatened by uppity Crown Prince Mohammed.
Despite this, he has let his son run, for the most part, wild. The 34-year-old Crown Prince infamously locked up most of Saudi Arabia’s business elite in the Ritz-Carlton in Riyadh and stripped them of their possessions in 2017, has worked on social reforms and massive building projects, ordered the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, and refused to back down from a 5-year-long war in Yemen which has evolved into a humanitarian crisis and killed 100,000 people.
Those well-versed in the intrigue at the Saudi palace say this is just one more step in Prince Mohammed’s mass political purge which is a precursor to him eventually being crowned as the king of Saudi Arabia. When all political dissent has been squashed, Crown Prince Mohammed could rule for decades.
David. “Saudi Prince Detains Senior Members of Royal Family.” The New York Times, The New York Times, 6 Mar. 2020, www.nytimes.com/2020/03/06/world/middleeast/saudi-royal-arrest.html.
Chulov, Martin. “Saudi Crown Prince Signals New Purge with ‘Treason’ Arrests.” The Guardian, Guardian News and Media, 7 Mar. 2020, www.theguardian.com/world/2020/mar/07/saudi-crown-prince-in-new-purge-with-treason-arrests.