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Saudi Arabia, Government

Saudi Arabia is a monarchy. The government is based on the Sharia, the sacred law of Islam, which is interpreted according to the strict Hanbali rite by the learned religious elders, or ulama. Saudi Arabia has no formal constitution; however, in March 1992 a series of royal decrees established a bill of rights, increased the powers of provincial governments, and provided for a Consultative Council (Majlis al-Shura), to be appointed by the king.

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