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Acquitted Saudi minister attends weekly cabinet session

Ebrahim Al Assaf was not dismissed as investigators probed alleged charges

Manama: A Saudi minister who was among those arrested in November in a massive anti-graft drive by a royal committee attended on Tuesday the cabinet weekly session after he was acquitted of all charges initially leveled against him.

A televised report showed Saudi State Minister Ebrahim Al Assaf sitting alongside the other ministers at the session chaired by King Salman Bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud and Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman.

Al Assaf was never dismissed from his ministerial position when he was referred to investigators in November and kept at the Ritz Carlton alongside several other public figures, princes and business tycoons.

“Investigators concluded that none of the reports received during his tenure as Minister of Finance was true and therefore he was found innocent and allowed to leave the hotel,” Saudi news site Sabq said.

“This proves that the leadership was prudent in its approach, did not rush into making decisions, was committed to justice and applied the law.”

Al Assaf, 69 on January 28, holds a Master’s in economics from the University of Denver (1976) and a PhD in economics from Colorado State University (1982).

In January 1996, he was appointed minister of finance and national economy, a position that was renamed minister of finance in 2003.

He was appointed State Minister and Member of the Cabinet on October 31, 2016.

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