- Neom is said to be the brainchild of Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.
- MBS claims Neom will have the capacity to accommodate 450,000 people by 2026 and nine million by 2045.
- Critics says human rights are being abused.
MBS claims Neom will have the capacity to accommodate 450,000 people by 2026 and nine million by 2045.
Ali Shihabi, a member of the project’s Advisory Board, told The Guardian that displaced members of the tribe would be compensated, adding: “Practice in Saudi has been that people have to accept it, and have usually done so because the government has a tradition of compensating generously.”
Claims of shootings and executions
ALQST’s head of events Abdullah Aljuraywi said the sentences were “shocking” and members of the tribe were “legitimately protesting against forced eviction from their homes”.
An artist’s impression of what those behind the Neom project propose life within The Line will look like. Source: Supplied / neom.com
Transparency and political suppression
Saudi Arabia has in the past been accused of monitoring dissidents’ mobile phones with surveillance malware.
The influence of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman
His ascent began in 2015 when was named the country’s minister for defence after his father became king.
“The Crown in Saudi Arabia historically was not so much of the tyrannical despot, it was more of a case of them ruling with a kind of council of elites around them.
Neom is part of Saudi Arabian Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s future vision for the country. Source: Getty / Anadolu Agency/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images
“In 2015, however, you had the new prince come along, and he immediately starts to really crack down on any kind of political vision that is not even necessarily opposed to his, but just an alternative voice or vision.”
“He’s trying to present the kingdom as kind of liberalising, opening up, providing greater degrees of freedom to the citizens, but on the other end of the spectrum, anyone who’s been agitating for this historically are seen as a threat and cracked down on, in extremely suppressive and often violent terms.”
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