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We never thought that we can move so freely

Green light beams travel through the century old mud houses. Twenty minutes drive from the Riad, the Wadi is an oasis Diriyah, surrounded by sand-colored city w

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We never thought that we can move so freely

Green light beams travel through the century old mud houses. Twenty minutes drive from the Riad, the Wadi is an oasis Diriyah, surrounded by sand-colored city walls, metres high palm trees and croaking frogs. In the garden of the Palmencafés couples hold hands in the darkness, which foreigners wandering through the old, picturesque Riad, accompanied by tourist guides. Diriyah, the historical birthplace of the Saudi state, has been in the past few years, under the supervision of the Saudi crown Prince's Muhammad bin restored Salman-consuming: museums, Restaurants, Wellness centre and luxury stores opened in the historic city. Nowhere else in the Kingdom of the past and the present meet each other like this.

nearly 300 years Ago, two men locked in Diriyah, a Pact that should determine the policy of the Kingdom for centuries: One was the founder of the first Saudi state, Muhammad ibn Saud, an ancestor of the present Royal house.

Ibn Saud promised, the ultra-conservative Islam, the interpretation of Muhammad ibn Abd al-Wahhab, namesake of Wahhabism, in his future state – in return, the cleric should legitimize the rule of the Saud family, the religious. The Foundation of the Saudi Nation was created.

Pop in the desert state

all the people here had the young crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman flown in mid-December, Western Superstars like the Black Eyed Peas, Enrique Iglesias, and One Republic to the largest music festival in Saudi Arabia. During the foreign rule, this time about his role in the murder of the Saudi publicists Jamal Khashoggi debated, put the crown Prince in the Arm to young Saudis who wanted to pose with him for Selfies. Did you know that you had it thanks to him: For the first Time in the history of the Kingdom danced, women and men side by side to Western music.

a few years ago patrolled customs guards on the streets, and stopped for the night at a reasonable safety distance between the sexes. Although security men attracted to some women from the audience, they let their hips, but to very circles, but otherwise there were no incidents – just a Surprise, announced by the French DJ David Guetta. As this hung up on a Remix of "Ash-Salman," a popular hymn to king Salman, shrieked the audience and sang: "Long Salman live, and all the people respond: Ash Salman long Salman live!" Hundreds of Smartphones and red glow sticks sticking up into the sky.

show business for jobs

Within a few months arose in the Kingdom a public life. "We never thought that we can move in Saudi Arabia at once as free as anywhere else in the world," says a young woman. She is sitting with five Friends at a Restaurant in the Riad, not want to read your name in the newspaper.

The times are tense. The more the country opens up, the tighter it goes against his critics. Transparency, or even say the majority of Saudis do not require, however, you seem to be the new Kingdom too much to distract. Only last Wednesday, Turki al-Sheikh, head of the state entertainment authority, GEA announced the construction of a multibillion-dollar entertainment industry – this year alone, car race, games of the North American Basketball League NBA and magic shows are planned. To create jobs, attract investors and keep the money of the Saudis, they spend otherwise, abroad, in the country.

The women in the Restaurant tell of the new Hitgetränk in Riyadh: red wine. Alcohol-free.

All of this is part of the Vision 2030, for the no one is like the Saudi crown Prince. Muhammad bin Salman is to prepare his home for a time after the Oil, he is the face of the anticipated change, even after the Khashoggi affair.

In Riyadh, the crown Prince looks walls, smiling from house, hospitals and banks on the way down, sometimes Hand in greeting, lifting, sometimes the look thoughtfully into the distance.

As the U.S. secret service, the CIA, the crown Prince for the murder of Khashoggi in mid-November, responsible, warned the then foreign Minister, Adel al-Jubeir in front of it to cross the "red line". The Royal house promised full enlightenment. However, as at the beginning of January, three months after the murder of Khashoggi, the process in Riyadh started, not published, accused the Royal house once the names of the eleven, the indictment was read to the exclusion of the Public.

In Turkey, the UN Rapporteur Agnes Callamard met on Monday to investigate the case, such as the UN human told right office. In Saudi Arabia, the state asks meanwhile, in five cases the death penalty. Official requests, where Saud al-Qahtani, media consultant and one of the presumed masterminds, is, and whether he directs the Agency for cyber crime, were Saudi Arabian side unanswered.

You don't is rumored, however, that he is part of the process. Here Qahtani is said to have had not only in the Khashoggi, the affair his fingers in the game. A few weeks before the lifting of the driving ban on women have not been deprived of the right activists, the social Opening went far enough. Now, reported by human rights organisations of torture and abuse in prison, where Saud al-Qahtani, according to Reports from members.

"Black October"

In Riyadh, hardly anyone under his own name about the speak to what is happening in the Saudi Consulate General in Istanbul. Seems dangerous to be still. And if they do, they call it "the incident", which had the responsibility of individuals, not the Royal house. Only a few speak of the "black October" of shock and awe, as the Royal house announced that Khashoggi had been dismembered by a Saudi hit squad. Of a sadness that had settled over the Land. And from the fear of Saudi Arabia without the crown Prince would look like.

"The fight Khashoggis or the woman activist is not our fight," say the women in the Restaurant. In France, the yellow vests were gone, Yes, only on the road, because you have nothing to lose. But here it was different. In the oil-rich Gulf States, an unwritten code of society has existed for decades, the contract: The Locals get the houses without the land tax, free education and health care, students receive a monthly salary, as well as scholarships for themselves and their families, if you want to study abroad – in return, they demand no political voice.

CHF 800 buses

shortly before new year's eve, the crown Prince launched the Initiative Snad Marriage, newly married couples receive, therefore, with a few clicks of financial support. It can afford every middle class household maids and drivers. As the running a red light cost the equivalent of about 100 Swiss francs, interested the no, says the young woman in the Restaurant. It was only when the penalty has been increased to 800 francs, held back the traffic offenders.

It is not common in Saudi Arabia, openly demanding transparency. Problems should be discussed in the family, many people believe. The women in the Restaurant to tell better from the new Hitgetränk in Riyadh – red wine. Alcohol-free, but taste real, assured the waiter. The women sipping on the glass, try it and herzuschwenken, as you know it from Hollywood movies. Only a middle-aged lady criticized the red wine-posturing. "We have our culture and traditions, we should have no one to imitate," she says. However, the young women waving and discuss whether white wine or Rosé fits in better with the Sushi.

The red wine is a simple invoice, open the door, many people in Saudi Arabia after the murder of Khashoggi: no Matter what happens, it must go forward, not backward. A Saudi Arabia without Muhammad bin Salman would be the return to the old Saudi Arabia, many believe – and want only the ultra-conservatives who can only complain in social media about the decline of morals in the Land of the Holy Islamic sites. Whose time but, as many say in Riyadh, is over Once and for all.

(editing Tamedia)

Created: 30.01.2019, 06:31 PM

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