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Senior Saudi royal detained in latest crackdown by crown prince

Senior Saudi royal detained in latest crackdown by crown prince
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman

Riyadh: In a latest crackdown by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MBS), Prince Faisal bin Abdullah al-Saud, a son of Saudi Arabia’s late monarch King Abdullah, has been in incommunicado detention since the end of March.

According to a prominent rights group, the prince was arrested by security forces on March 27 while self-isolating because of the coronavirus pandemic at a family compound northeast of the capital, Riyadh. 

The prominent member of the royal family had been rounded up in 2017, and was detained at a luxury hotel in Riyadh but was released later that year.

MBS launched a sweeping crackdown against senior royals and security officers earlier in March. However, it was not clear if the detention of Prince Faisal was related to those in early March. The crackdown is seen as an effort by de facto ruler to consolidate power in the kingdom.

Denouncing the detention, rights groups have observed that the lawless behaviour of Saudi authorities during the de facto rule of Mohammed bin Salman continues unabated despite waves of criticism.

Aljazeera quoted Michael Page, deputy Middle East director at HRW as saying, “Now we have to add Prince Faisal to the hundreds detained in Saudi Arabia without a clear legal basis”.

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