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The purge in Saudi Arabia causes some “concern”, says Tillerson

Ⓒ AFP – Jim Watson – | US Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, at an official dinner in Tokyo on November 6, 2017

The US Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, considered Friday that the unprecedented purge in Saudi Arabia in the name of the fight against corruption provokes some “concern”.

“I have spoken with the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Adel Al Jubeir, to ask for clarification and I believe, based on this conversation, that the intention is good,” Tillerson said on the plane that was taking him to Danang in Vietnam.

“Personally, I think this raises some concerns as long as we do not have more clarity about what’s going to happen to those people,” he added.

More than 200 people were arrested in Saudi Arabia as part of an unprecedented anti-corruption purge that essentially affected princes, ministers and businessmen.

This announcement took place in a context of drastic reforms in the ultraconservative kingdom under the impulse of the young Crown Prince Mohamed bin Salmán. It also occurs in an increasingly tense climate with Iran.

On Monday, US President Donald Trump had unhesitatingly supported King Salman and the crown prince in a tweet. “Some of those whom they treat with harshness ‘bleed’ their country for years!”, He wrote.

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