RIYADH — King Abdullah on Monday appointed as interior minister Prince Mohammed bin Nayef, who has led a crackdown on al-Qaeda terrorists and survived a suicide bomb attack claimed by the jihadists.
The monarch removed half-brother Prince Ahmed bin Abdul Aziz from the position “upon his request,” according to a royal decree carried by SPA state news agency.
Prince Mohammed is effectively the first second-generation member of the al-Saud dynasty after ailing Prince Saud al-Faisal to hold one of the key ministries that had been confined to the first line of princes.
The new minister, who had served as assistant minister for security affairs since 1999, has effectively led the kingdom’s crackdown on al Qaeda, following a wave of deadly attacks between 2003 and 2006.
He survived a suicide attack in August 2009 when a bomber managed to infiltrate the prince’s security and detonated his implanted explosives next to him.
Prince Mohammed suffered only superficial injuries, but apart from the bomber, who was killed, no other serious casualties were reported.
Cameron orders probe into child abuse scandal
LONDON — Prime Minister David Cameron ordered an investigation Monday into newly raised allegations related to a major child abuse scandal in north Wales in the 1970s and 1980s.
“These actions are truly dreadful and they mustn’t be left hanging in the air,” Mr. Cameron, who now leads the Conservative Party, said in Abu Dhabi during a three-day tour of the Gulf and Middle East.
His announcement comes amid national scrutiny of the alleged sexual abuse of hundreds of young people by Jimmy Savile, the well-known BBC TV host who died last year. Police say that since the complaints against Savile were made public last month, hundreds of people not linked to his case have emerged to report their own allegations of past abuse.
Mr. Cameron said he would appoint an independent figure to lead an investigation aimed at determining if a previous major public inquiry into the north Wales scandal was sufficiently thorough. The Waterhouse Inquiry reported in 2000 on abuse at several Welsh children’s homes, foster homes and other care facilities in the 1970s and 1980s.
In an interview with the BBC’s “Newsnight” program broadcast Friday, abuse victim Steve Messham alleged that the Waterhouse Inquiry had stopped short of examining claims made against a Conservative Party figure. The BBC did not name the political figure, and no one connected at the time to the party has ever faced charges related to the abuse scandal.