Saudi Arabia promises a return to ‘moderate Islam’

The crown prince’s reference to 1979 was likely a nod to a tumultuous year for the country, in which Riyadh jostled with Iran for leadership of the Islamic world. Saudi Arabia’s Shiite minority also staged a deadly revolt in Al-Hasa province which same year.

In response, the Saudi monarchy strengthened ties with the Wahhabi religious establishment along with restored many of its hardline stances. Wahhabism is actually a form of Islam which emphasizes the absolute sovereignty of God, bans the mixing of sexes in public along with places numerous restrictions on women.

In 2015, King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud – alongside bin Salman – sought to introduce a brand new age of Saudi politics. along with in June, the king promoted bin Salman to crown prince, generating him heir apparent.

The two have cracked down on religious incitement, sanctioned the first music concerts in decades along with gradually granted women a growing number of rights — including the right to drive, which is actually set to take effect in 2018.

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