Saudi Arabia's King Salman will abdicate the throne next week in favor of his son, reported the Daily Mail on Friday in an exclusive report. The crackdown was ordered by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. A source near the royal family told the tabloid that the king will keep the title of "Guardian of the Holy Sites" and will retain a ceremonial role in the kingdom.
The move is seen as the final step in 32-year-old Prince Mohammed bin Salman's power grab, which began earlier this month with the arrests of more than 40 princes and government ministers in a corruption probe.
Saudi Arabia is now experiencing a period of dramatic change spearheaded by Crown Prince Mohammad, who is seen as the driving force behind the kingdom's ambitious economic and social plans.
"According to domestic banking sources, more than 2,000 bank accounts have already been frozen", said Enzo Caputo from the Switzerland-based Caputo & Partners law firm.
Those detained have been spared prison in an attempt to maintain the delicate consensual alliance between the many different - and often competing - branches of the royal family.
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Saudi authorities have offered wealthy individuals detained on various corruption charges an opportunity to buy back their freedom, according to a recent report.
However, till now, Saudi government did not make any comment on these deals.
Senior Lebanese officials and other world leaders have been trying to figure out what is going on behind the scenes in the Hariri case, with many of them pressuring the Saudi regime to secure the safe return of Hariri to his homeland.
Credit spreads and the cost of insuring debt against default have increased not only for Saudi Arabia and Lebanon, but across the six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council, which includes Qatar, Kuwait and Abu Dhabi.
Many also see Riyadh's policies as a major cause of the crises unfolding in the region, especially in Syria and Iraq.