France Honours Saudi Crown Prince for 'Fighting
Terrorism and Extremism'
March 07, 2016 "Information
" - President Francois Hollande has
awarded the Legion d'Honneur, France's highest
honour, to visiting Saudi crown prince Mohammed
bin Nayef, the president's office confirmed on
office had released no statement on the visit
that took place Friday, but it was reported by
the Saudi news agency SPA, which said Nayef was
cited for his "efforts in the fight against
terrorism and extremism".
Hollande aide said Nayef, who is the Saudi
interior minister, received the honour as a
"foreign individual, a common protocol
practice," noting that Hollande himself received
Saudi Arabia's top honour during one of his
Bilateral ties are strong, sealed by major arms
deals as well as Riyadh's participation in the
fight against the Islamic State (IS) group.
the bestowal of the Legion d'Honneur on Nayef
sparked harsh criticism on social media from
opponents to the death penalty, many tweeting
using the hashtag "#honte" (#shame).
Arabia on Sunday carried out its 70th execution
so far this year, beheading a man convicted of
January, 47 people were executed for
"terrorism," including Shiite cleric Nimr al-Nimr,
a driving force behind protests that began in
2011 among the kingdom's minority Shia.
interior minister, Nayef would have been closely
involved in the approval of the executions
people sentenced to death in Saudi Arabia are
beheaded with a sword.
as reported by Middle East Eye, have their
limbs amputated before they are killed, and
others are crucified after being put to death.
the 47 executed were a mentally ill man and a
prisoner who was arrested while still a
Arabia is also regularly accused of aiding
hardline Sunni groups in wars in Yemen and
Syria, and it has shipped weapons to Syria that
have ended up in the
hands of Islamic State militants.