Publication details

Saudi Political Intolerance. January 24. Eurasia Review. This article was also published by Muslim Mirror and by International Policy Digest on January 26. It has also featured on The Daily Journalist and the Mashreq Politics and Culture Journal

Author(s): Khatib, Hakim
Year of publication: 2016

Abstract: Beheadings in public, including a prominent Saudi Shiite cleric, prompted reactions not only inside Saudi Arabia, but also in Iran, Iraq and most recently in Bahrain. Saudi Arabia’s death wedding in January 2016 signals the Kingdom’s intolerance towards any dissent against the royal family. The Saudi law of January 2014 doesn’t “merely criminalise dissent”, but defines it as “terrorism”, according to The Independent. While claiming to fight against terrorism, Saudi Arabia is looking forward to settle political scores inside and outside its borders. The executions are not a precedent for Saudi Arabia. Only in 2015, the average of executions reached 12 persons every month. Western Allies, Saudi Arabia and other Gulf States know that no consequences to account for. Historically, western powers have nearly always turned a blind eye to atrocities attributed to their Gulf allies because of economic calculations such as import of oil and export of arms. Thus, historical allies are unwilling or unable to make a real change.

Keywords: Iran, Saudi Arabia, Al-Nimr, Sunni, Shia, intolerance, extremism

Research area: Research Area 2: The Dynamics of Normative Orders: Rupture, Change, Continuity
Research project: Formation of a New Gender Order in Tunisia after the Revolution

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