Mar 24, 2011

Saudi king uses a mix of stick and carrot

By Adrian Blomfield in Jerusalem

Saturday March 19 2011

SAUDI King Abdullah yesterday announced unprecedented economic benefits worth tens of billions of dollars, but warned against any attempt to undermine the kingdom. In a speech on state-run television, the king, praised the security forces for preventing protests that were planned for March 11.

He rewarded the interior ministry by ordering the creation of 60,000 more military and security jobs and a large number of promotions for soldiers and officers.

He also announced massive social benefits, including higher unemployment payments, better healthcare and improved housing services and loans.

Among other things, he ordered the pumping of 250 billion riyals (€47bn) into building as many as 500,000 housing units. This is in addition to a package of social benefits worth an estimated €25bn, mostly aimed at youth, civil servants and the unemployed, announced earlier this month. (? Daily Telegraph, London)

- Adrian Blomfield in Jerusalem

Irish Independent

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Hi, my name is kim. I'm studying at the University of Amsterdam, and created a blog about the situation in the Middle East. I am currently in Egypt for my studdies. Happy reading!

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