Saudi Arabia's King Salman, who had arrived in the south of France a week ago for a three-week break, cut short his holiday after a petition from some 150,000 residents over the closure of a public beach outside his villa. Many businesses were, however, more than happy to meet his demands. They claimed the Saudis bring much-needed revenue to the area.
A Saudi source said the king had arrived in Morocco, saying this was part of his holiday programme and had nothing to do with the media coverage that his visit had attracted. With him were at least half of his 1,000-strong entourage had left France.
The king’s installation of an elevator from the beach to the villa, approved for temporary use by the local government, also provoked anger among some residents who objected to allowing him this privilege.
The elevator would be removed in the coming weeks.