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Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal Bin Abdulaziz Alsaud, Chairman of the Alwaleed Bin Talal Foundation, right. Photo: Farah Abdi Warsameh / AP

Saudi Arabia's King Salman has fired a slew of princes from their government posts in what has been billed as an anti-corruption move, per state-linked network Al Arabiya. Though not directly linked, the anti-corruption campaign is taking place just as Saudi Aramco is preparing an IPO next year which will likely be the largest ever. The company will list its shares on its domestic exchange, as well as a foreign one.

Background: Additionally, high-profile billionaire Al-Waleed bin Talal has reportedly been arrested as well, according to the Wall Street Journal. Al-Waleed's business ties and investments through his Kingdom Holding Company are far and wide. In addition to majority ownership in media conglomerate Rotana Group, Al-Waleed's investments in technology and media over the years have included News Corp., Twitter, Lyft, Fox News, Citigroup, and Apple.

Go deeper

10 hours ago - World

Maximum pressure campaign escalates with Fakhrizadeh killing

Photo: Fars News Agency via AP

The assassination of Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, the architect of Iran’s military nuclear program, is a new height in the maximum pressure campaign led by the Trump administration and the Netanyahu government against Iran.

Why it matters: It exceeds the capture of the Iranian nuclear archives by the Mossad, and the sabotage in the advanced centrifuge facility in Natanz.

Scoop: Biden weighs retired General Lloyd Austin for Pentagon chief

Lloyd Austin testifying before Congress in 2015. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Joe Biden is considering retired four-star General Lloyd Austin as his nominee for defense secretary, adding him to a shortlist that includes Jeh Johnson, Tammy Duckworth and Michele Flournoy, two sources with direct knowledge of the decision-making tell Axios.

Why it matters: A nominee for Pentagon chief was noticeably absent when the president-elect rolled out his national security team Tuesday. Flournoy had been widely seen as the likely pick, but Axios is told other factors — race, experience, Biden's comfort level — have come into play.

Updated 12 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Health: WHO: AstraZeneca vaccine must be evaluated on "more than a press release."
  2. Politics: Supreme Court backs religious groups on New York COVID restrictions.
  3. World: Thailand, Philippines sign deal with AstraZeneca for vaccine.
  4. Economy: Safety nets to disappear in December Black Friday shopping across the U.S., in photosAmazon hires 1,400 workers a day throughout pandemic.
  5. Education: National standardized tests delayed until 2022.