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Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 13 December 2018

Saudi's Crown Prince and Prince Miteb seen together after corruption probe

In a handout picture released by the Saudi Royal Court, the two men are seen together taking part in the Annual Horse Race ceremony in the capital Riyadh on Saturday

Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and Saudi Prince Miteb bin Abdullah (L) take part in the Annual Horse Race ceremony in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, on December 30, 2017. Bandar Algaloud / Courtesy of Saudi Royal Court / Reuters
Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and Saudi Prince Miteb bin Abdullah (L) take part in the Annual Horse Race ceremony in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, on December 30, 2017. Bandar Algaloud / Courtesy of Saudi Royal Court / Reuters

Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and Prince Miteb bin Abdullah were seen for the first time in public together since the latter was released from detention after a sweeping anti-corruption purge.

In a handout picture released by the Saudi Royal Court, the two men are seen together taking part in the Annual Horse Race ceremony in the capital Riyadh on Saturday.

“Upon [Crown Prince Mohammed’s] arrival to the venue, he was received by Prince Faisal bin Bander, governor of Riyadh, Prince Miteb bin Abdullah, Prince Faisal bin Khaled, governor of Asir region, and Prince Khalid bin Abdul Aziz, minister of the National Guard,” reported the state-run Saudi Press Agency (SPA).

Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and Saudi Prince Miteb bin Abdullah (L) take part in the Annual Horse Race ceremony in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, on December 30, 2017. Bandar Algaloud / Courtesy of Saudi Royal Court / Reuters
Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and Saudi Prince Miteb bin Abdullah (L) take part in the Annual Horse Race ceremony in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, on December 30, 2017. Bandar Algaloud / Courtesy of Saudi Royal Court / Reuters

Saudis on social media have expressed their happiness over the two royals' meeting on Saturday, saying it signified strength and unity in the kingdom.

"A conversation between Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and Prince Miteb bin Abdullah ended with a kiss from Crown Prince Mohammed to his older brother, Prince Miteb, carrying a message of strength, belonging and unity of the Saudi ruling house," said Saudi Bandar Al Damer on Twitter.

Prince Miteb, son of late King Abdullah and former National Guard chief, was freed late in November after three weeks in detention following an undisclosed settlement with authorities.

Read more: Saudi Arabia released 23 corruption detainees

On Friday, a source close to the government said that two of Prince Miteb’s brothers were also released after they were detained in the anti-corruption crackdown, reported AFP.

A family member posted photos of Prince Faisal bin Abdullah, a former head of the Saudi Red Crescent, and Prince Mashal bin Abdullah, a previous governor of Mecca, on Twitter.

The source also said that Prince Turki bin Abdullah was the only brother left in detention.

The four brothers were among more than 200 royals, officials and businessmen detained on charges of corruption in a crackdown led by Crown Prince Mohammed.

Most of those detained have struck monetary settlements in exchange for their freedom, the attorney general said this month. Meanwhile, those who continue to deny charges against them will soon face trial.

The detainees have been held at Riyadh's Ritz Carlton hotel and other five-star hotels in the capital.