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The War Within Islam ( 18 Aug 2013, NewAgeIslam.Com)

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Saudi Prince Defects: 'Brutality, Oppression as Govt Scared Of Arab Revolts'


An RT Report

August 13, 2013

Saudi Arabia, a major supporter of opposition forces in Syria, has increased crackdown on its own dissenters, with 30,000 activists reportedly in jail. In an exclusive interview to RT a Saudi prince defector explained what the monarchy fears most.

“Saudi Arabia has stepped up arrests and trials of peaceful dissidents, and responded with force to demonstrations by citizens,” Human Rights Watch begins the country’s profile on its website.

Political parties are banned in Saudi Arabia and human rights groups willing to function legally have to go no further than investigating things like corruption or inadequate services. Campaigning for political freedoms is outlawed.

One of such groups, which failed to get its license from the government, the Saudi Civil and Political Rights Association (ACPRA), was cited by AFP as saying the kingdom was holding around 30,000 political prisoners.

Saudi Prince Khaled Bin Farhan Al-Saud, who spoke to RT from Dusseldorf, Germany, confirmed reports of increased prosecution of anti-government activists and said that it’s exactly what forced him to defect from his family. He accused the monarchy of corruption and silencing all voices of dissent and explained how the Saudi mechanism for suppression functioned.

“There is no independent judiciary, as both police and the prosecutor’s office are accountable to the Interior Ministry. This ministry’s officials investigate ‘crimes’ (they call them crimes), related to freedom of speech. So they fabricate evidence, don’t allow people to have attorneys”, the prince told RT Arabic. “Even if a court rules to release such a ‘criminal’, the Ministry of Interior keeps him in prison, even though there is a court order to release him. There have even been killings! Killings! And as for the external opposition, Saudi intelligence forces find these people abroad! There is no safety inside or outside the country.”

 Prince Khalid Bin Farhan Al-Saud


The strong wave of oppression is in response to the anti-government forces having grown ever more active. A new opposition group called Saudi Million and claiming independence from any political party was founded in late July. The Saudi youths which mostly constitute the movement say they demand the release of political prisoners and vow to hold regular demonstrations, announcing their dates and locations via Facebook and electronic newspapers.

Human rights violations are driving people on to the streets despite the fear of arrest, according to activist Hala Al-Dosari, who spoke to RT from Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

“We have issues related to political and civil rights, freedom of expression and freedom of assembly. These are the main issues that cause a lot of people to be at risk for just voicing out their opinions or trying to form associations, demonstrate or protest, which is banned by the government.”

The loudest voice of the Saudi opposition at the moment is a person called ‘Saudi Assange’. His Twitter name is @Mujtahidd, he keeps his identity and whereabouts secret and is prolific in online criticism of the ruling family, which has gained him over a million followers.  

“The regime can destroy your credibility easily and deter people from dealing with you if your identity is public,” Mujtahid wrote to RT’s Lindsay France in an email.

Prince Khalid Bin Farhan Al-Saud announced his defection from the Saudi Arabian royal family on July 27.

“They don’t think about anything but their personal benefits and do not care for the country’s and people’s interests, or even national security,” his statement reads as cited by the website of Tehran-based Al Alam International News Channel.

The Twitter activist’s anonymity is understandable. The most recent example of what can happen to activists is the case of Raif Badawi, the founder of the Free Saudi Liberals website, who was found guilty of insulting Islam through his online forum and sentenced the activist to 600 lashes and seven years in prison.

In June, seven people were sentenced to up to 10 years in prison for ‘inciting protests’ via Facebook. The indicted denied charges and said they were tortured into confession.

“The government is obviously scared of the Arab revolutions. And they’ve responded as they usually do: by resorting to oppression, violence, arbitrary law, and arrest,” Prince Khaled says, adding that so far the tougher the measures the government took to suppress the dissent, the louder that dissent’s voice was. 

“The opposition used to demand wider people’s representation in governing bodies, more rights and freedoms. But the authorities reacted with violence and persecution, instead of a dialogue. So the opposition raised the bar. It demanded constitutional monarchy, similar to what they have in the UK, for example. And the Saudi regime responded with more violence. So now the bar is even higher. Now the opposition wants this regime gone.”

There was a time, at the beginning of the Arab Spring movement in the region in 2011, when the government tried to appease opposition activists by a $60 billion handout program by King Abdullah, according to Pepe Escobar, a correspondent for the Asia Times. He calls that move an attempt to “bribe” the population. However there was also a stick with this carrot.

“The stick is against the Shiite minority - roughly 10 percent of Saudi Arabia - who live in the Eastern province where most of the oil is, by the way. They don’t want to bring down the House of Saud essentially. They want more participation, judiciary not answering to religious powers and basically more democratic freedoms. This is not going to happen in Saudi Arabia. Period. Nor in the other Gulf Cooperation Council [GCC] petro-monarchies”.

Escobar points out the hypocrisy of the Saudi Arabian rulers, who feel free to advise other regional powers on how to move towards democracy, despite their poor human rights record.  

“They say to the Americans that they are intervening in Syria for a more democratic post-Assad Syria and inside Saudi Arabia it’s the Sunni-Shiite divide. They go against 10 percent of their own population.”

 'Buying favors from West'

Saudi Arabia’s crackdown on opposition has been strongly condemned by human rights organizations, but not by Western governments, which usually claim sensitivity to such issues.

   “The White House certainly does maintain a long-standing alliance with the leaders of Saudi Arabia, cemented by common political, economic and military interests in the Middle East,” said Prince Khaled.

Germany came under fierce criticism last week over its arms sales to Saudi Arabia and other Gulf states, which have almost tripled in just two years, from 570 million euro in 2011 to almost one-and-a-half billion in 2012.

And Angela Merkel's government has approved weapons exports of more than 800 million euro in the first half of this year - suggesting the level will continue to grow.

“With arms they [Gulf States] are also buying favors from the West. They are insuring the maintenance of their legitimacy on spending massive amounts of money that are pouring into Western economies,” Dr. Ahmed Badawi, co-executive director of Transform, which studies conflicts and political developments, told RT.

In 2012, Amnesty International claimed that German-made small firearms, ammunition and military vehicles were commonly used by Middle Eastern and North African regimes to suppress peaceful demonstrations.

“Small arms are becoming real weapons of mass destruction in the world now. There is absolutely no way to guarantee that the weapons that are being sold legally to countries like Saudi Arabia, even Egypt, do not fall into the hands of terrorists. The two important examples are German assault rifles found in the regions in Mexico and also in Libya. And there’s absolutely no way of knowing how these weapons ended up there,” Badawi said.


Comments on the article:

fran7 14.08.2013 08:48

USA backed Saudi Arabia is not in touch with the people and shows all the signs of a brutal dictatorship. "Is this the type of DEMOCRACY the USA wants?"

30,000 people in prison just because the current regime feels threatened by them is not a fair or good way to run a country. Saudi Arabia is backing the cannibal rebels in Syria to bring down the legitimate government causing death and destruction to innocent Syrian people. Mr Bank Ki-Moon should look into the illegal acts against HUMAN RIGHTS in Saudi Arabia and Bahrain if he wants to be seen in a good light and take the necessary action to enforce international law

Jay Volk 13.08.2013 14:10

I know this is not relevant to the story, however he can spend however much money to have a snazzie hair cut, and a clean shave, yet he cannot manage the unibrow?? Common Mr. Prince, lets have some consistence here!

Saddique Hassan Durrani 13.08.2013 10:25

I am no great lover of Saudi; they have brought misery to my country. but question is you will believe a DEFECTOR(traitor) he will say anything, not to be sent back. of all the people a prince who are the privileged lot in that country would defect.. Why?

   zainol abidin abuamar 13.08.2013 09:09

Whenever syiah start voicing their demand, it almost always spell trouble to any peaceful nation. These ungrateful syiah community in Saudi should all be given a chance to repent for the evildoings and warmongering in the Islamic State. What they did throughout the history is nothing but treachery and exploitation. If they don’t repent, then they should all be killed. period.

fran7 13.08.2013 08:04

Don't forget this undemocratic regime is backed fully by USA and UK which is total hypocrisy on their part given the interventionist policies they advocate in the middle east which is only causing death and destruction.

   Deen Ahmed 13.08.2013 05:34

There may be issues with in the Saudi system but it still is working despite its shortcomings. The Royal family has kept order in the country. There are problems with every type of system, this seems to work for this country. Saudi sunnis are majority hence they decide who will rule them. Syria on the otherhand has a minority sect ruler who represses the majority. Saudi did not get involved until Bashar started the bloodshed. I support Saudi.

   Bader Rammal 13.08.2013 03:52

Saudi Arabia has the world's quarter (1/4) oil reserves, and is the core of 1.5 billion Muslims. Egypt has the Canal to pass the oil to the West and for the East West trade. Therefor, Saudi Arabia and Egypt can literally "CHOKE" the World!

   Yehoshua Barukh 13.08.2013 01:15

Saudi Arabia home of Jihad and oppressive tyrannical Sheiks. It's no wonder there will never be peace in the Middle East while you have the US funding wars, terrorists, and dictators like SA. Syria on the other hand was a peaceful country with various religions and ethnicity's living side by side until the US backed / funded war to oust Assad who in reality is serving his people's needs just a Ghaddafi was before the West’s propaganda initiated war and removal. Russia you are the only power that can stand up to this evil, don't let the world down.

Motoman 13.08.2013 00:18

Muslims should wake up.

Any deity who requires humans to defend his religion, or to come to the rescue of their gd by violence against infedels who say words, or make a video or write a book against islame, ahhlaa or Mohan ... proves that deity has no power outside humans, a false deity with no power to rescue himself

  Thus we have religious use to supress, oppress and control people like sheep,

   Motoman 13.08.2013 00:18

Muslims should wake up.

Any deity who requires humans to defend his religon, or to come to the rescue of their gd by violence against infedels who say words, or make a video or write a book against islame, ahhlaa or moham ... proves that deity has no power outside humans, a false deity with no power to rescue himself

   Motoman 13.08.2013 00:09

I was sitting at the resturant with a friend, having dinner and a beer, i pointed over there and told my friend ....look over there 2 old guys having a beer and dinner, in 10 years that will be us ----- my friend looked and said you dumbasssss that is a mirror

   Murray Bernie 13.08.2013 00:08

Muslims all around the World will soon wake up the fact that Saudi Arabia, Qatar etc are directly responsible for all the death, destruction, and desecration off their holy lands. The Saudis directly finance and arm psychopathic terrorists to carry out their barbaric atrocities on innocent Muslims. They are directly responsible for all the death and destruction and misery in Syria as they try and build a wahabi empire. They tried to bribe Russia in to betraying Syria,Russia will not betray Syrians at any price.

   Connie 12.08.2013 23:59

Muslims make Haj (pilgrimage) to Saudi Arabia to walk around the holy Qaaba, throw stones at the devil, and are quite devout.

But what kind of a 'holy' place is it? A Saudi man was beheaded in public for fornicating with a Saudi princess, a Philippino servant had chili peppers stuffed up her bottom for using the royal loo, and that abuse is forever condoned by the US, afraid of what Saudis are capable of doing by raising price of oil. Public beheadings have been the norm for ages.

   nicktrcat . 12.08.2013 23:17

@DawnHChapman your buddies sister's aunties granny has to work six hours every day every month all year long to recieve the paltry amount you quote. For Israelis too!

   Hans v.d. B 12.08.2013 23:06

It is important to know that SA monarchy is part of the elite, the so-called FreeMasonry, which developed a plan for the NWO a long time ago, based on the ideas of Albert Pike.

Libya West 12.08.2013 22:53

So now that the saudi's and qatari's have done the bidding of their euro/amero/zionist masters by riding point in the destruction of one Arab or Africa country after another, it's time for the western cracker dogs to destroy them. The chickens are coming home to roost and all of the resources of the world are slowly finding their way into euro/amero/zionist pockets.

Uuuu 12.08.2013 22:30

Brave man!!! BRAVO... Deserves support of honest and wise people (Obviously West is excluded). It is time the Western/US hypocrites adapt righteous and honest policies and STOP supporting Saudi, Kuwaiti Qatari, Yameni puppets etc governed by the Royal Families sold out to them like prostitutes. The Westerners are only lighting fire and hatred there, sucking their petrol and wealth to the best they can. They have no regard for human rights or any decent aspect of humanity. Wish you the very best the brave PRINCE!

   RockyFjord 12.08.2013 21:37

Wow! What a scoop! What a coup! Western media is not even reporting this. This is a very, very big story!

Also great timing. Take the US/UK by the collar and rub their noses in the House of Saud's sod. This is just a wonderful story and development. That Saudi prince has courage, a real mensch. Good for him! This is very good news indeed. Saudi Arabia is a police state like America, but its fortress of repression now has a crack in it, and soon the walls will be breeched.

 Alex 12.08.2013 21:31

it is time for these leaches to call it a day and go and join their masters in US. I worked in that dump and see how lazy and backward these supper rich animals are.

   Mickie Leland 12.08.2013 20:38

Did British actor Stephen Fry, selectively forget that in Saudi Arabia, gays & lesbians are far worse off than in Russia? In Russia, the legislation only limits electronic & print 'agit-prop.' In Saudi Arabia, the mere expression of one's alternative sexuality would be met with instant & deliberate intolerance &/or imprisonment. After all, the mere exposure of a women's face is enough to land her in jail. If she commits adultery, burial up to her head & bloody public stoning based on Sharia law. I don't recall hearing Mr. Fry's or President Obama decrying these human rights abuses & Medieval excesses in Saudi Arabia?

Alex P. 12.08.2013 20:10

Oh yeah, Saudi Arabia is going to melt down for sure; so much for the petro-dollar. I wonder, do the Saudi people know that America plans to bring them G@y rights?

   Tyrone Smith 12.08.2013 19:48

No matter how evil or oppressive those monsters are, they have oil to sell, so the United States of Avarice treats them as an ally, and helps them oppress. You should expect nothing less from a government that has us all under constant surveillance.

   Greg L 12.08.2013 19:44

Question to Saudi readers from a US citizen:

Do you prefer democracy or sharia? Why?

   Agently Orange 12.08.2013 19:27

there is no such thing as a muslim democracy. never was, never will be.

   uri 12.08.2013 19:06

Persian Gulf Arab States should respect their citizens. Saudi Arabia should take into account its own people rather than interfering in other countries.

   Gerd 12.08.2013 19:02

The German "Michel" is stepping in the next trap, to be condemned for any actrocities in the future--Holywood is still manufacturing hate movies about Germany(for the last 60 years) -so this will be continued ,all for the benefit of the Zionist/US consortium. Germans are on drugs? or are thay realy not right in their heads ?called "plem plem"

Rod 12.08.2013

Imagine a country that has been known to carry out crucifixions as a form of criminal execution in the last century and you might begin to have a some idea about life in Saudi Arabia.

   Mark Roman 12.08.2013 17:11

Seleman Juakali Mwangalaba 12.08.2013 17:03

when are going to finish your project with US

  Not any time soon. Putin just axed a deal with Saudi Arabia last week regarding weapons and Syria.

Mark Roman 12.08.2013 17:08

george aranda 12.08.2013 16:44

Will the middle east bring the world to a ultimatum confrontation??????

  It appears that way. It is spreading to India and Pakistan, who both have nuclear weapons.

 Seleman Juakali Mwangalaba 12.08.2013 17:03


so confused the so called holy place Saudi for Muslims what image of Islam you do depict.AL Saudi are you really follower of MONOTHEISM OR you HYPOCRITE.why are you funding Terrorist all over the world.when are going to finish your project with US

   Mark Roman 12.08.2013 16:57

Prince Khaled 12.08.2013 16:16

Saudi intelligence forces find these people abroad! There is no safety inside or outside the country

  Yes there is. It's called Sheremetyevo Airport Terminal F.

   Irfan Ahmad 12.08.2013 16:54

Sauidi govt. supports anti-state elements in other Muslim countries and supressing same elements in their own country.... Hypocris

 george aranda 12.08.2013 16:44

will the middle east bring the world to a ultimatum confrontation?????? will they ever live in peace???

 Mati Aryanpor 12.08.2013 16:25

Basically, these arrest are based on sects. The activists are those people who support terrorist regime of Syria who everyday kills their own people - not even kind to childern.

Saudi govt has right to stop such activities within his govt and territory who create disorder.

Cid FlyHigh 12.08.2013 16:16

interesting news, refreshing by it's topic and location, thanks RT.

hope 12.08.2013 16:13

West helps keep in power the parasitical Saudi Family, the most repressive regime on the planet. The Saudis help the West install their illegitimate puppets around the Middle East. This evil partnership has spawned mostly death, and destruction for ordinary people, but mega bucks for the military-security-in dustrial complex

Shame on leaders of the world for going along with this heinous scheme.

Stan Dinsmore 12.08.2013 15:52

Dissension in the ranks? House of Saud has always been sponsors of Tyranny, + use their money + power in the region to do the dirty work of their Western masters. They are the Wests main proxies in the region. Its the new norm in the ME. Don't leave Israel to be condemned for any Wars; let the Saudi's take the fall instead of the Israelis.

lordlebu 12.08.2013 15:45

The situation in Mid-East reminds me of the 30 years of war in the 17th century Europe between Protestants and Chatholics.

Lord Anonymous 12.08.2013 15:44

Hearing cry from syrian graves for justice. Hopefully Saudi people can stop their blood thirsty kings and soon live in democracy.

Kermit Frazier 12.08.2013 15:41

All the Suadi Royal Family needs now is anothe Orens to Interface with Western Media as the Human-Face-of-Salafi

Not even close to joking about this either

  Codename Taco 12.08.2013 14:25

Dream up an excuse for a war, draft your dissenters, kill them, call them "great patriots", bury them with full military honors and a flag. It's impossible to run an extermination facility without the rest of the world finding out, but you can still get around it by attributing the deaths to other circumstances. You could release a biological agent via the mess hall and create a false flag about your enemy using WMDs on your "troops". This is an opportunity for creative evil.

Th is is straight out of the US govt play-book. Scary doings.

AnonAfrican 12.08.2013 14:49

One man one vote one king! A dictatorship protected by oil! Where are the sanctions against this repressive regime? Where does the USA mission to "bring democracy to all" stand on this issue?

The prince is a brave man.

K K Singh 12.08.2013 14:49

Most dictatorial Saudi Arabia is the closest friend of "democratic&quo t; US and the fascist Obama has nothing to say, while he is disturbed by Syria's Human Right's record!!

 Brian Johnson 12.08.2013 14:48

Clearly, the filthy rich Saudi Royals fear their own people more than anything else. They are ruthless & incredibly brutal. They demonstrate what opulent, unmitigated power will do to keep that power. 'The Emperor has no clothes' when the US critisizes other countries' 'human rights' records & covers for & casts a blind eye toward fascist Saudi Arabia with its own horrible human rights history. It is the Death Star of the Middle East. Did anyone really have any illusions about how anyone that rich could actually be 'NICE GUYS?'

Think Peace 12.08.2013 14:37

Saudi Arabia appears to be major source of troubles in the Middle-East, Pakistan, Afghanistan and other places. Saudis use their money to fund killings and destruction in these places. They feel comfortable doing all sorts of bad things with very little or no backlash, especially by Muslims, because they claim being guardian of most revered religious icons of Islam. Saudis are using and abusing the trust of more than billion Muslims of the world.

   Think Peace 12.08.2013 14:37

Saudi Arabia appears to be major source of troubles in the Middle-East, Pakistan, Afghanistan and other places. Saudis use their money to fund killings and destruction in these places. They feel comfortable doing all sorts of bad things with very little or no backlash, especially by Muslims, because they claim being guardian of most revered religious icons of Islam. Saudis are using and abusing the trust of more than billion Muslims of the world.