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With eye on investors, Saudi Arabia plans training for judges

Published on Feb 25, 2014 11:16 PM

RIYADH (REUTERS) - Saudi Arabia said on Tuesday it would set up training centres for its judges, overriding resistance from religious conservatives in a move that should accelerate judicial reforms in the kingdom.

Changes to the legal system are seen by analysts as crucial for wider social and economic reforms aimed at reconciling Saudi Arabia's ultra-conservative traditions with the demands of a young population and modern economy.

However, some clerics in the kingdom have opposed any change to the judiciary, seeing the country's legal system of sharia or Islamic law as a divinely inspired set of rules that cannot be changed by temporal authorities.

A cabinet statement reported by the Saudi Press Agency said the training centres, run by the Justice Ministry, would focus on the "efficiency and performance" of judges and other officials.

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