- Title: SAUDI ARABIA: Newi Crown Prince Nayef pledges to protect the haj pilgrimage
- Date: 2nd November 2011
- Summary: CROWN PRINCE NAYEF WATCHING BAND VARIOUS OF SAUDI SPECIAL FORCES (HAJ PILGRIMAGE) TAKING PART IN MILITARY PARADE MORE OF HAJ SECURITY FORCES IN PARADE HAJ SECURITY FORCES PARADE AND HELICOPTER FLYING OVER HELICOPTER FLYING OVER PARADE CLOSE OF HELICOPTER FLYING OVER VARIOUS OF SPECIAL FORCES PARADE VARIOUS OF SPECIAL FORCES WITH ARMOURED VEHICLES HELICOPTER SHOOTING DURING DEMONSTRATION SHOWING CAPTURE OF SUSPECT SPECIAL FORCES JUMPING FROM HELICOPTER SPECIAL FORCES DETAINING "SUSPECT" "SUSPECT" SURRENDERING TO SPECIAL FORCES SPECIAL FORCES ARRESTING "SUSPECT" AND TAKING HIM TO HELICOPTER HELICOPTER LANDING SPECIAL FORCES READY TO LIFT "SUSPECT" ON BOARD HELICOPTER VARIOUS OF SPECIAL FORCES AND "SUSPECT" HANGING ON ROPE FROM HELICOPTER HELICOPTERS FLYING OVER (*** FLASH PHOTOGRAPHY ***) CROWN PRINCE NAYEF SEATED AT NEWS CONFERENCE WIDE OF NEWS CONFERENCE REPORTER ASKING QUESTION SOUNDBITE (Arabic) SAUDI CROWN PRINCE AND INTERIOR MINISTER PRINCE NAYEF BIN ABDULAZIZ, SAYING (AUDIO AS INCOMING): "We are ready to face all events, whatever they are." REPORTER ASKING QUESTION. SOUNDBITE (Arabic) SAUDI CROWN PRINCE AND INTERIOR MINISTER PRINCE NAYEF BIN ABDULAZIZ, SAYING (AUDIO AS INCOMING): "We are ready to face all events, whatever they are ... our means are peaceful ... except for those who want to attack, whom we will prevent with all means." END OF NEWS CONFERENCE, PEOPLE LEAVING.
- Embargoed: 17th November 2011 12:00
- Location: Saudi Arabia, Saudi Arabia
- Country: Saudi Arabia
- Topics: Crime,Domestic Politics,Royalty
- Reuters ID: LVAAKKIQIRP66GDKC7YZE50VZQAM
- Story Text: Crown Prince Nayef, the new heir to Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah, warned on Tuesday (November 1) the kingdom would use "all means" to ensure a peaceful haj pilgrimage amid tumult in other Arab countries and rising tensions with Iran.
Millions of Muslims have started to arrive in the holy city of Mecca to perform the haj, one of Islam's five pillars and a duty for all Muslims who are physically able.
Home to Islam's holiest sites, Saudi Arabia regards itself as the guardian of Islam and assumes the responsibility of maintaining a peaceful haj when Muslims from many countries and sects gather at the same place and time.
"We are ready to face all events, whatever they are ... our means are peaceful ... except for those who want to attack, whom we will prevent with all means," Nayef told a news conference in Mecca in answer to a question about the possibility of violent protests. Nayef is also Saudi Arabia's interior minister.
The news conference followed a military parade featuring riot police, special forces and tanks that the kingdom can call upon in the event of trouble hitting the pilgrimage.
In 1987, clashes between Iranian pilgrims and Saudi security forces led to the deaths of hundreds of people.
Last month the interior ministry accused an unnamed foreign power, widely interpreted as meaning Iran, of instigating an armed attack by members of the kingdom's Shi'ite minority on a police station, injuring 11 security officers and three civilians.
Later in October, the United States accused two Iranians of plotting to assassinate the Saudi ambassador to Washington with the backing of Tehran. Iran denied the charges.
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