Saudi King Salman leaves France after beach controversy

goodbye_wahhabis

The French say ‘Goodbye Wahhabis’

The king and his 1,000 person entourage cut a planned three-week stay short after 150,000 sign petition over beach closure.

Via the Irish Times:

The planned three-week visit by the new king and his inner circle at the family’s seafront villa in Vallauris, where US actress Rita Hayworth celebrated her wedding to Prince Aly Khan of Pakistan in 1949, was expected to be a boon for the local economy.

But the closure of the public beach for privacy and security reasons stirred up a local storm. The king’s installation of an elevator from the beach to the villa, approved for temporary use by local government, also provoked anger among some residents who objected to allowing him this privilege…

…France has been nurturing new links with Saudi Arabia and other Gulf Arab countries over the last three years due to its tough stance on Iran and similar positions on conflicts across the Middle East. It is beginning to see commercial rewards in terms of contracts for companies in the energy and defence sectors.

Government leaders profit from Saudi largesse, so they will always pander to them. But the French aren’t putting up with it anymore.

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About marypmadigan

Writer/photographer (profession), foreign policy wonk (hobby).
This entry was posted in middle east, Politics/Foreign correspondents and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

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