Jeddah, Asharq Al-Awsat – The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah Bin Abdulaziz emphasized yesterday, that the kingdom’s oil policy favors moderate oil pricing.
“The kingdom’s petroleum policy is moderation in prices. Despite the benefits that the increase in prices brings us, we advocate moderation in oil prices,” King Abdullah told Asharq Al-Awsat, yesterday.
“Petroleum production is plentiful. That’s why I am surprised by … the unjustified rise in prices,” he said.
King Abdullah also told Asharq Al Awsat that he personally intervened to ensure that the lives of “rascal” militants were spared in a siege of a building containing terror suspects.
Islamist radicals surrendered after Saudi security forces besieged the building in the Red Sea port city of Jeddah last Monday. Clashes with al Qaeda supporters over the last three years have usually resulted in deaths, and police often employed huge firepower in shoot-outs in urban areas.
“The operation was completed successfully and none of our brave security forces were lost. The lives of citizens are dear to us, including those of the group of ‘rascals’,” said the king, using a word normally used to refer to naughty children.
“Although the security forces were keen (to storm the building), I asked them to wait and be patient, since there’s no need to rush … even the lives of the ‘deviant group’ are important to us,” he added, using the Arabic phrase authorities most often use to refer to militants.
In June, the king renewed an amnesty he first offered to repentant militants two years ago when he was then crown prince and when the Islamists’ campaign was at its height. But the violent campaign by supporters of Osama bin Laden has ebbed in the face of toughened security measures.