First the Saudi government arrested dozens
of its political and business elite ...
now King Salman has spelled out why - because corruption he says is threatening his country's economy.
(SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) SAUDI ARABIA'S KING SALMAN BIN ABDULAZIZ, SAYING: (OVERLAID WITH SHOTS OF SHURA COUNCIL'S MEMBERS LISTENING, END OVERLAID WITH SHOT OF SAUDI CROWN PRINCE MOHAMMED BIN SALMAN LISTENING)
"Corruption in all its forms is a grave plague that handcuffs societies and prevents their development. We have decided, with God's help, to confront it with justice and decisiveness so that our country can enjoy the renaissance and development that every citizen aspires to."
The Kingdom is in the middle of a push to wean itself off its dependence on oil by 2030.
In a televised speech to the country's consultative Shura council
Salman said the private sector will become a partner in the diversification drive.
But the Purge could end up having the opposite effect.
Some foreign investors are concerned the crackdown could damage the economy,
and make it a less attractive place to do business.
The public prosecutor said last week that most of those detained in the anti-corruption campaign have agreed to settlements to avoid prosecution, while the rest could be held for months.