Princess raps S Arabia on rights abuses
A Saudi princess has criticized the Riyadh regime for corruption, poverty and serious violations of human rights in the oil-rich Persian Gulf Kingdom.
Princess Basma Bint Saud Bin Abdul Aziz, who is a niece of King Abdullah and a social activist, told British media she would not remain silent about what is happening in her native country.
The princess, currently living in London, slammed what she called the lack of fairness in the distribution of wealth and power between the loyal family and ordinary people.
“You have 2,000 [royals] who are multi-millionaires, who have all the power, all the wealth and no-one can even utter a word against it because they are afraid to lose what they have," Princess Basma said.
"If you are poor man and you steal, your hand is cut off after three offences. But if you are a rich man, nobody will say anything to you," she added.
She also accused Saudi officials of ineptitude, adding they are not held accountable for what they do.
“We have ministers who are incapable of doing what has been ordered from above because there is no follow-up, because there are no consequences,” the 47-year-old princess said.
Several right groups and international bodies including the Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International have frequently condemned the Saudi regime for their widespread violation of human rights.
Saudi Arabia is the only country in the world that bans women from driving. The ban is not enforced by law but is a religious fatwa imposed by the country's Wahhabi clerics.
In addition to driving prohibition, women in Saudi Arabia must have written approval from a male guardian, which could be a father, husband, brother or son, to leave the country, work or even undergo certain medical operations.