New Delhi:  Three senior members of Saudi Arabia’s royal family, including two senior princes, have been detained on charges of plotting a coup,  the US media reported Friday, indicating Mohammed bin Salman, the kingdom’s de facto ruler is further tightening his grip on power. Also Read - Saudi Arabia Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman India Visit: Issue of Pakistan-sponsored Terrorism Top on New Delhi's Agenda

As per the reports of Wall Street Journal, the royal guards took Prince Ahmed bin Abdulaziz al-Saud, a brother of King Salman, and the monarch’s nephew Prince Mohammed bin Nayef, into custody from their homes early Friday.

The duo, who were once considered potential contenders for the throne, has been accused of “plotting a coup to unseat the king and crown prince”.

Besides, Prince Nayef’s younger brother Prince Nawaf bin Nayef had also been detained.

This is the latest crackdown by the de facto ruler, who has consolidated his grip on power with the imprisonment of prominent clerics and activists as well as princes and business elites.

In 2017, Saudi anti-corruption committee headed by crown prince Mohammed bin Salman had detained 11 princes, four sitting ministers and dozens of former ministers in what was declared a crackdown on corruption.

(With agency inputs)