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Handelsblatt: Nepotism on the knives in the Royal house of Saudi Arabia

«Al-Walid Ibn Talal al-Saud, the richest businessman in Saudi Arabia, released after allegations of corruption. Behind this lies a power struggle with his cousin, crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. The struggle continues,» writes Mathias Brueggman on the pages of the German edition of Handelsblatt.

The king’s son Muhammad bin Salman and billionaire al-Walid, and cousins, their fathers are sons of the founder of the state from the dynasty of al-Saud. «Instead of uniting, the relationship becomes a cause of constant dispute: the father of al-Walid in 2015 was one of four opponents who voted against the accession to the throne of the current king Salman. Likely, since al-Walid and MBS, as it is called crown Prince in Saudi Arabia, finally fell out, according to insiders in Riyadh», the article says.

MBS recently retaliated for the insult of his father: once in November he was appointed by his father the head of the established anti-corruption Committee, Muhammad bin Salman has moved to drastic measures. Was arrested nearly 300 politicians, servants of the Supreme state authorities and entrepreneurs – including a cousin of the crown Prince, the longest been under arrest and released on Sunday.

«There are no accusations, there was only some discussion between me and the government. All this is just a misunderstanding,» said al-Walid shortly before his release.

«However, members of his entourage and close to the government sources say that al-Walida will now have to transfer nearly all his assets to the state», – said the author. Besides, now he can travel abroad only accompanied by representatives of state authorities, reports the publication.

In an interview given a few hours before liberation, al-Walid also said that he fully supports the reforms of the crown Prince: «This is excellent, keep on.»

«However, there are two things that princes differ significantly: while al-Walid on Twitter called Donald trump a «disgrace» Muhammad bin Salman very closely with the American President. And besides: while the 62-year-old Prince becoming a philanthropist, claiming in 2015 that is going to donate his fortune, which amounted at that time $ 32 billion as economic assistance to developing countries, as well as educational and medical projects, a 32-year-old MBS only builds his Empire. Enough contentious issues will be between the two princes in the future,» – concludes the author.

Handelsblatt: Nepotism on the knives in the Royal house of Saudi Arabia 01.02.2018

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