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In Saudi Crown Prince’s Crackdown, Echoes of Xi’s China

  • Two leaders round up rivals in the name of economic reform
  • Campaigns tap into public frustration with ruling elite

If Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s bid to speed economic reforms by rounding up rivals in graft raids sounds familiar, that’s because China has been doing it for years.

The arrest of princes, billionaires, ministers and retired officials in Saudi Arabia last weekend bore resemblance -- in both scope and stated mission -- to Chinese President Xi Jinping’s five-year-old anti-corruption campaign. And they may also have similar side benefits: pacifying the ruling elite and consolidating power around one man.