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Changes On The Way in Saudi Arabia

King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia will address his nation tomorrow, promising modest reforms and measures to increase social welfare, such as bolstering food subsidies. Among the reforms will be the sacking of the ministers of defense, higher education and religious affairs. A vaguely defined drive to stamp out corruption will also be proposed. Although Saudi Arabia has not seen anywhere near the intensity of protests impacting its neighbor, Bahrain, experts believe these directives are designed to head off any form of popular uprising from the start. Abdullah is thought to be ailing, haven recently undergone major surgery. Still, the 86 year old king is rather popular, although the monarchy as a whole is not.


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