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Saudi Arabia’s top military commander sacked

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Saudi Arabia’s King Salman sacked a top military commander and his son on Monday as part of an anti-corruption purge.

The decree said Prince Fahd bin Turki bin Abdulaziz Al Said would be removed from his post as commander of joint forces in the Saudi-led coalition fighting in Yemen and would be placed in retirement. His son, Prince Abdulaziz bin Fahd has been relieved of his post as deputy governor of the al-Jouf region.

State media said Al Said was replaced by Mutlaq bin Salim, the deputy chief of staff, on the recommendation of the kingdom’s de facto ruler Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

Al Jazeera reports that four other military officers were also placed under investigation.

The announcement marks the latest government crackdown on what officials say is endemic corruption in the kingdom.

Mohammad bin Salman, after becoming heir to the throne in 2017 in a palace coup, launched an anti-corruption campaign that saw scores of royals, ministers and businessmen detained in Riyadh’s Ritz-Carlton hotel.

Most were released after reaching undisclosed settlements with the state.

While the crown prince has made fighting corruption a pillar of his reforms, critics say he is moving to sideline rivals to his eventual succession to the throne, take control of the country’s security apparatus and crack down on dissent.

Saudi author and analyst Ali Shihabi said the government decision to remove the commander was a “very public signal against corruption in the military.

DW / Al Jazeera

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