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 The Times

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Hopes that Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman would be a reformer who could heal the region have come to nothing

First came the hype, with millions spread around like muck by western PR companies and lobbyists to trumpet Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s world tour last March. He was the coming Saudi strongman, you will recall, all at the age of 32.

Six months on, the realities of his soaring ascent look more uncertain, with even his father, King Salman, beginning to show signs of doubt. Maybe the crown prince has as much substance as a firework?

The king’s brother, Prince Ahmed bin Abdulaziz, a former interior minister, was persuaded last week (in part by the Bahraini and Yemeni protesters outside his London home) to distance the Saud family from Salman and his ambitious heir. Though he has since downplayed his remarks, another exiled prince…

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