Saudi Arabia drone regulations nearly finalized

Israel-Saudi liaison

Saudi Arabia was finalising regulation for the use of recreational drones, state media said Sunday, after a drone sparked security alarm as it hovered close to royal palaces in Riyadh.

An security screening point had noticed the traveling of some tiny unauthorized recreational drone, leading security forces to address it "according to their own requests and guidelines", state news agency SPA'd said.

An Interior Ministry spokesman said regulation on the use of drones was "in its final stages", according to the official SPA news agency.

The Saudis put out the statement from the Riyadh police after a flurry of unconfirmed rumors spread on social media of clashes and gunfire near the royal palace and a possible coup. Reports confirmed that King Salman was not inside the palace during the incident.

Raul Castro hands baton to Miguel for Revolution 2.O
The Candidacy Commission also nominated another six vice presidents of the Council of State, Cuba's highest government body. State media went into overdrive Wednesday with a single message: Cuba's system is continuing in the face of change.

The 32-year old prince has also overseen a major military shake-up and royal purge as he consolidates power much beyond wielded by previous rulers.

Saudi official said King Salman was not at the palace when the incident took place. Space for criticism has also narrowed in recent months following the arrests of prominent clerics and activists in an apparent bid to silence dissent.

Saudi Arabia has witnessed a series of radical political changes over the past year under the king's son, Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who has spearheaded reforms to transform the economy, open the country culturally, and impose a more tolerant form of Islam in the deeply conservative kingdom.

In 2015, the Gulf kingdom banned drones "of all types and sizes" from operating in Saudi skies without a special permit from the General Authority of Civil Aviation.

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