Saudi arrests 11 princes for staging protest

Eleven Saudi princes were arrested Thursday for staging a protest against a recent economic order.

The princes staged a sit-in at the palace in Riyadh to express disapproval over the royal decree that “halted payments by the state to members of the royal family to cover their electricity and water utility bills”.

The protesting princes also demanded a compensation for 2016 state execution of a cousin who was convicted of murder.

Authorities told the princes that their demands were unlawful, but they refused to stop the demonstration.

The princes are being detained at Al-Hayer prison south of Riyadh, pending trial.

Sheikh Saud Al Mojeb said in a statement “No one is above the law in Saudi Arabia. Everyone is equal and is treated the same as others,” the statement said.

Two months ago, authorities arrested dozens of royals, businessmen and senior govt official as as apart of a corruption crackdown.

Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman has introduced sweeping changes, including subsidy cuts, new taxes and lifting of a controversial ban on women driving.

Also King Salman announced news cost-of-living allowances for military personnel, govt employees and students this week.

Govt employees will receive 1,000 riyals for an year as cost-of-living allowance while military personnel serving Saudi led coalition in Yemen will receive 5,000 riyals.

King Salman’s decree also increases the stipend for students by 10% for one year and increases retirement allowances.

 

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