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IPFS News Link • Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia Worried About Islamist Uprising As US-Backed Normalization With Israel 'Close'

• https://www.zerohedge.com, Via The Cradle

Arrests of Saudi citizens over social media posts related to 'Israeli genocide' in Gaza have markedly increased in recent months, as Riyadh is reportedly concerned that "Iran and Islamist groups could exploit the conflict to incite a wave of uprisings," according to people familiar with the matter who spoke with Bloomberg.

Recent arrests include "an executive with a company involved in the kingdom's Vision 2030 economic transformation plan," who reportedly expressed views on Gaza deemed "incendiary," an unnamed media figure who said "Israel should never be forgiven," and a citizen who called for the boycott of US fast food chains in the kingdom.

According to one of Bloomberg's sources, over the past six months, there has been a "significant increase" in the number of prisoners entering a maximum-security prison south of Riyadh. The New York-based publication says this account was corroborated by diplomats in the Saudi capital and human rights organizations who have tracked a "spike in social media-related arrests" since 7 October.

"The Saudi arrests for Gaza-related posts indicate Prince [Mohammed bin Salman's] regime will take a hard line against citizens not toeing the line when it comes to normalizing ties with Israel," Bloomberg reports.

In a visit to the Gulf kingdom on Monday, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said that intensive work has recently been done toward a Saudi–Israel normalization deal, which he said is "potentially very close to completion."

Nevertheless, on Wednesday, the Guardian reported that Riyadh has devised a "more modest" defense pact with Washington as authorities prepare to move past Israeli normalization over Tel Aviv's intransigence regarding the formation of an independent Palestinian state and their determination to assault Gaza's southernmost city of Rafah.