Several of Saudi Arabia’s princes and businessmen who were held in the Ritz Carlton hotel in Riyadh for months have been released.
They were arrested for alleged corruption, and were freed over the past few days after reportedly giving in to certain demands.
One of Saudi Arabia’s most prominent businessmen, Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, was among them.
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has been the driving force behind the arrests.
Prince Mohammed bin Salman has outlined his plans for the kingdom in his Saudi Vision 2030.
He wants to reduce Saudi dependence on oil by diversifying its economy, and develop public service sectors including health, education, infrastructure, recreation, and tourism.
He has also pushed for social reforms, allowing women to drive, and opening up movie theatres for the first time in nearly 40 years.
So was the crackdown only about money or was there something else?
Presenter: Richelle Carey
Sami Hamdi – editor-in-chief of The International Interest
Joseph Kechichian – senior fellow at the King Faisal Center for Islamic Studies
Pierre Conesa – lecturer at the Paris Institute of Political Studies