The Al Qaeda terrorist network in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) has warned Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman of his reforms, saying re-establishing cinemas and bringing WWE wrestlers into the country were sinful projects.
The terrorist group said Mohammad bin Salman replaced mosques with cinemas and gave up religious texts in a statement in his Madad news bulletin, quoted by the SITE Intelligence Group.
The influence of atheistic and secular visions paved the way for corruption and moral degradation in Saudi Arabia, the organization said in its statement.
AQAP was especially unhappy with the WWE Royal Rumble event, which took place in the UK in April. They said that American wrestlers exposed their private parts and used signs of the cross before the mixed multitude of Muslim men and women.
Other signs of degradation include daily concerts, movie shows and circus shows, the jihadists added.
Ever since he became crown prince a year ago, Bin Salman has introduced a series of reforms aimed at supposedly democratizing the ultraconservative Muslim state, including lifting the ban on women driving, reintroducing shows and cinemas, and allowing women to spectate football matches .
However, the situation in the country was questioned in late May after the arrest of more than a dozen women activists calling for the lifting of rules that require Saudi women to receive permission from a male relative before making important decisions about their lives.
Bin Salman is also responsible for a massive “anti-corruption” crackdown last year that saw more than 200 Saudi princes, ministers and officials arrested in a move that analysts say was in fact an attempt to consolidate power and extort money from the rich.
AQAP gained strength because of the ongoing conflict in Yemen, in which Saudi Arabia and its allies became involved in 2015. Riyadh fought Houthi-led resistance fighters with the aim of reinstating deposed President Mansour Hadi in power.
Interestingly. Saudi Arabia itself has supported and financed AQAP in it’s terrorism venture in Yemen. Meanwhile, the Saudis officially claim to working to oppose AQAP in Yemen. This playbook mirrors that of the US in Syria and Iraq.
AQAP’s main ideology, a perversion of the Islamic faith, is based upon the very same Wahhabism native to Saudi Arabia, and in fact part of the legitimating ideology of the KSA itself.
Since then, thousands civilians have been killed and more than 10,000 injured, the UN said in early May, adding that “the vast majority of these civilian casualties were the result of air strikes carried out by the Saudi-led coalition.”
After more than three years of fighting, Yemen faces a huge humanitarian crisis. More than 22.2 million people in the country need assistance, with 60 percent of the population without food and more than half without basic medical services, according to the UN.