UK says no sign of serious instability in Saudi Arabia

'It is hard to foresee ... what happens in any of the nations of the Middle East,' British Foreign Secretary says
UK says no sign of serious instability in Saudi Arabia
BRITISH VIEW: The British government has no indication of serious instability in Saudi Arabia, Foreign Secretary William Hague said on Wednesday
By Reuters
Thu 17 Mar 2011 12:35 PM

The British government has no
indication of "serious instability" in Saudi Arabia, Foreign
Secretary William Hague said on Wednesday.

Asked how confident he was about Saudi Arabia's longer term
stability, Hague told a parliamentary committee: "It is hard to
foresee ... what happens in any of the nations of the Middle
East.

"They are all introducing various degrees of reforms or
various degrees of improvements to the lives of their own
populations as a response to what has happened," he said.

"We have no indications of serious instability at the moment
in Saudi Arabia. There have been some demonstrations," he said.

Last month, King Abdullah unveiled handouts worth an estimated $37bn to ease social pressures.

Saudi Arabia, a US ally, has escaped
protests like those across the Arab world, but some dissent has built
up as unrest has spread in neighboring Yemen, Bahrain, Jordan and Oman.

Web
activists had slated March 11 as the first day for mass protests around
the country in favor of democratic government and a constitutional
rather than absolute monarchy.

But
a religious ruling banning demonstrations and a heavy police crackdown
appeared to have intimidated most potential protesters.

For all the latest business news from the UAE and Gulf countries, follow us on Twitter and Linkedin, like us on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube page, which is updated daily.

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Subscribe to Arabian Business' newsletter to receive the latest breaking news and business stories in Dubai,the UAE and the GCC straight to your inbox.