RIYADH/DOHA - Saudi social media users interpret the rare execution of an Al Saud prince as a sign of equality under Islamic law, approval likely to reassure Riyadh's absolute rulers as large spending cuts test the kingdom's welfare-based social contract.
Prince Turki bin Saud al-Kabir was found guilty of shooting dead another Saudi national during a brawl and was executed after a royal order by King Salman, the interior ministry said on Tuesday.
Members of the ruling family, estimated to number several thousand, have only rarely been executed. A prince who assassinated his uncle, King Faisal, was beheaded in 1975 and a princess was shot dead for adultery two years later.
In 2004, a young prince who had gunned down an acquaintance was pardoned by the victim's father at the last minute, after arriving at Riyadh's execution square.