Anti-corruption detainees in Saudi ‘will get due process of law’

21 Nov 17

The royals, ministers and businessmen detained as part of Saudi Arabia’s crack-down on corruption will get due process of law, Saudi’s United Nations ambassador has said. 

This comes as dozens were arrested earlier this month by the kingdom’s anti-corruption committee, including members of the royal family, ministers and dozens of ex-ministers and businessmen. 

UN ambassador Abdallah Al Mouallimi said at the UN: “I can assure you there will be due process for anybody who is detained.”

He added that he did not have a figure to share about how many had been detained but it “is something that the security authorities will announce in due course”.

Those detained face accusations of money laundering, extortion, bribery and exploiting public office for personal gain. The anti-corruption committee has the power to seize company funds and other assets before inquiries begin.

The committee was set up by the crown prince to investigate public corruption and aims to make Saudi Arabia more attractive to foreign investors. 

This followed the kingdom’s attempts to improve economic performance and oversight of its public finances.

The crown prince Mohammed bin Salman said earlier this year that anyone guilty of corruption would be punished.

He said in a television interview: “No one is above the law whether it is a prince or a minister.”

Saudi Arabia announced last month its $500bn plan for a new business and industrial city, stretching across its borders into Jordan and Egypt.

The authorities have made progress in implementing reforms to adjust the formerly oil-dependent state’s fiscal policy under its Vision 2030 project, which are “beginning to bear fruit”, according to the IMF.

 

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