In a statement released late on Saturday, Human Rights Watch reported that the son of the late Saudi King Abdullah, has been in incommunicado detention for more than a month now.
Saudi Prince Faisal bin Abdullah Al Saud, a son of the late King Abdullah and ex head of the Saudi Red Crescent Society, is being detained incommunicado--"disappeared"--the latest prominent Saudi detained with no legal process under the Saudi crown prince. https://t.co/LEXTd2s0lR pic.twitter.com/G2hEw9SD6u— Kenneth Roth (@KenRoth) May 9, 2020
According to the prominent human rights organization, Prince Faisal bin Abdullah Al Saud, who was head of the Saudi Arabian Red Crescent Society, has been arrested by security forces since March 27. The Saudi prince was reportedly self-isolating at his Riyadh residence in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak.
Prince Faisal is feared to be "detained incommunicado with no legal process" as no officials have provided any details on his whereabouts.
The prince, who is a graduate of the American University in London, was among a group of royal figures and businessmen arrested and held at Riyadh's Ritz Carlton in November of 2017, in what was labeled as "an anti-corruption campaign" orchestrated by Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman, who's perceived by many analysts as the de facto ruler of Saudi Arabia.
A month later, Prince Faisal was released on the condition of not leaving the country.
Releasing several royals and businessmen without trial and after giving up considerable amounts of money, urged many to portray the detentions as "an attempt to solicit hundreds of millions of dollars."
However, the reason behind this sudden second arrest, reported now by HRW continues to be unclear, especially as Saudi authorities remain silent.
This is not the first time Saudi royals have been reported missing since the beginning of 2020. Observers have linked the different detentions with a growing sentiment of opposition towards MBS's policies within the royal family.
عاجل | اعتقال فيصل بن عبدالله بن عبدالعزيز احد ابناء الملك عبدالله وعدد 16 أمير بعد أن استشعر الفرعون الصغير بعدم مبايعتهم له ملكاً pic.twitter.com/PtmhuEPp6p— نايف النملان (@n_alnamlan) May 9, 2020
Translation: "Breaking: Prince Faisal bin Abdullah bin Abdelaziz, son of King Abdullah and 16 other princes have been arrested after the little Pharaoh feared that they won't pledge alliance to him."
Two months ago, MBS had reportedly launched another crackdown targeting senior and high-ranking figures of Al Saud, including his youngest uncle Prince Ahmed bin Abdul Aziz and former Crown Prince and minister of interior Mohammed bin Nayef.
Additionally, outspoken Princess Basmah bint Saud Al Saud has made several Twitter calls demanding her release from Hair jail, clarifying that she had been under arrest for more than a year.
I am beseeching my uncle, Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman bin AbdulAziz Al Saud, and my cousin, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, to review my case, and to release me as I have done no wrong. My current health status is VERY critical— الأميرة بسمة (@PrincessBasmah) April 27, 2020
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