First Published: 2013-01-14

 

Appointment of new Saudi governors empowers second generation of princes

 

Prince Saud replaces Prince Mohammed bin Fahd who was strongly criticised by Shiite activists for his aggressive policy towards them.

 

Middle East Online

Younger generation, at last?

RIYADH - Saudi King Abdullah has appointed Prince Saud bin Nayef as the new governor of the kingdom's oil-rich Eastern Province, home to the Shiite minority that frequently complains of discrimination, the official SPA news agency reported Monday.

Prince Saud replaces Prince Mohammed bin Fahd who was in office since 1985 but was strongly criticised by Shiite activists for his aggressive policy towards them.

Prince Saud, who was the kingdom's envoy in Spain, is the eldest son of former crown Prince Nayef -- a half-brother of King Abdullah -- who died last June.

Nayef had also supported dealing firmly with opponents and the Shiite minority.

Since early 2011, mainly Shiite towns in Eastern Province have seen sporadic protests and confrontations between police and Shiites who are estimated to number some two million in the Sunni-dominated kingdom.

King Abdullah also appointed Prince Faisal, son of Crown Prince Salman bin Abdul Aziz, as governor of the holy city of Medina, in the west, the agency said.

He replaces Prince Abdul Aziz bin Majed bin Abdul Aziz, a member of the royal family who had held the post since 2006.

Members of the royal family usually hold the positions of governors, a rank of minister, in several regions of the kingdom.

The old generation of Saudi princes clung to power for too long. Seniority was defined by age and loyalty.

If one looks at the distribution of power in the kingdom today he may realize that power has been already transferred to the second generation of princes.

 

Marzouki, Essebsi set for runoff in Tunisia presidential vote

Time runs out for biggest chance to resolve Iran nuclear standoff

Southern Morocco storms claim eight lives

Iraqi forces retake areas near Iran border from jihadists

Lebanon's Jumblatt tweets his life besides politics

Khartoum, Darfur rebels open ceasefire talks

Egypt leader heads to Italy

Morocco arrests six over online IS allegiance pledge

Biden wraps up Turkey visit without breakthrough on Syria

Sudan launches investigation into claims of 'mass rape' in Darfur village

Assad urges ‘real pressure’ on backers of 'terror'

Israel eyes powers to revoke rights of Arab residents

Iraq death sentence to ex- PM threatens to damage ties with powerful tribe

Iran hardliners resist possible nuclear deal in rare protest

After failure of boycott, Bahrain Shiite opposition resorts to accusations

Tunisia votes for president in first free and multi-candidate election

Hope for change and stability as Tunisia prepares to elect new president

Saudi detainee sent home as US speeds up Guantanamo repatriations

Economy and security top agenda of Sisi’s first European tour

Benghazi attack report clears Obama administration of serious charges

Voters bet on stability in crucial Bahrain elections

Hurdles remain high as Iran and world powers press on for nuclear pact

Shebab ‘revenge’ attack leaves 28 innocents dead in Kenya

Strains between Washington and Ankara despite declared agreement

Paypal teams up with AttijariWafa Bank to boost Morocco exports

UN begins sending winter aid to Iraq

Turkey launches all-out war against bonzai drug

Turkey to build bridge across Dardanelles to ease traffic

IS launch major attack on Ramadi

Biden: You cannot think free where you cannot challenge orthodoxy

Does Abbas have enough political influence to stop violence in Jerusalem?

Turkey offers military assistance to Iraq

Bomb hits police post near Helwan University in Egypt

UN demands staff member release in South Sudan

Tunisia goes for democracy to counter schemes of Ennahda and Marzouki

US envoy: IS ‘impaled itself’ on Kobane

Iran sees ‘no more room’ for talks on design of Arak reactor

Morocco King and Biden discuss ‘compelling alternative’ to dissuade potential jihadists

In response to Amnesty report: UAE remains committed to protection of human rights

World blacklists Ansar al-Sharia group in Libya

Dempsey places heavy responsibility on Iraq fractured army

Ladies first at Global Entrepreneurship Summit

Barbarism of suicide bombers rocks Arbil in fresh bloody attack

Egypt gives its blessing to Qatar return to Arab fold

France identifies second citizen in IS execution video