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Global Geo-political Series: Houthi rebels offer asylum to Saudi princes in Yemen

Houthi rebels from Yemen has offered Saudi Arabian princes asylum in neighboring Yemen as the Corruption Committee under the leadership of new Crown Prince Mohammad bin-Salman detaining princes, high ranking officials, wealthy businessmen and incumbent ministers over corruption charges. Earlier this week, Saudi Arabia’s crown prince Mohammad bin-Salman, who replaced his elder cousin Mohammad bin-Nayef to become next in line to the throne after his father King Salman by a royal decree has further tightened his grip on power as the newly formed anti-corruption committee arrests 11 princes, several senior officials and incumbent ministers. The king had decreed the creation of a powerful new anti-corruption committee, headed by the crown prince, only hours before the committee ordered the arrests.

The reports are coming out suggesting deepening of the crackdown with assets and bank account freeze. Saudi authorities have frozen the bank accounts of the kingdom’s former crown prince, Mohammed bin Nayef, the latest royal targeted in a corruption crackdown carried out by a Saudi leadership seeking to consolidate power. Since the arrest that began over the weekend, Saudi authorities have expanded the crackdown, carrying out new arrests every day. As of Wednesday evening, around 1,800 bank accounts had been frozen in connection with the probe, according to people familiar with the matter.

Earlier this week, following the death of Prince Mansour bin-Muqrin in a helicopter crash near the Yemen border, the Saudi Royal Court has confirmed the death of Prince Abdul Aziz bin Fahd, the youngest son of former king Faud, who was killed during a firefight as authorities attempted to arrest him.

A source close to the Houthi leadership told Al Jazeera on Tuesday that any Saudi prince or national seeking refuge would be welcomed by Yemen, their brotherly neighbor, which is a kind of irony given the fact that Saudi Royals are currently waging a war in Yemen. According to the source, the offer is 100 percent genuine and the Houthi rebels don’t seek to gain any political advantage.

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