Bin Salem was appointed as the new crown prince of Saudi Arabia on 21 June and it was seen by some as a significant move that can bring about economic changes in the Kingdom. Prince Mohammed also serves as the kingdom's defense minister, putting him in charge of Saudi Arabia's costly military intervention against the Houthi rebels in neighboring Yemen.
Movement restrictions are also said to have been placed on the former crown prince's close family members including his daughters.
Saudi state news media has gone out of its way to portray a smooth transition, repeatedly broadcasting a video showing Mohammed bin Salman deferentially kissing the hand of Mohammed bin Nayef, often referred to as M.B.N., who wishes him well. "He doesn't want any rear-guard action within the family".
The Times reported an unnamed member of the Saudi royal court and an unnamed U.S. "former official" as saying bin Nayef returned to his palace in Jeddah to find his trusted guards had been replaced by guards loyal to bin Salman. "He wants a straight elevation without any dissent - not that bin Nayef was plotting anything anyway".
A senior Saudi official described a New York Times report that Mohammed bin Nayef had been confined to his palace in Jeddah and prevented from leaving the country as "untrue, completely false and baseless".
Reuters reported that Mohammed bin Salman's promotion concluded two years of speculation about a rivalry near the pinnacle of royal power, but analysts said he still has to win the loyalty of powerful relatives, clerics, and tribesmen.
The major hitch in this theory is that Nayef has close relations with a number of American officials due to his years of running Saudi intelligence, and his American colleagues say they have not been able to formally communicate with him since he was put on palatial ice.
Three other conditions, claimed Khalid, are stated in return for helping Bin Salman take the throne before the death of his father: "Working to settle all Gaza residents in north Sinai as an alternative homeland and Saudi Arabia along with the UAE will afford the needed funds; getting rid of Hamas and whoever supports it; and getting Sanafir Island from Egypt".
Nayef, 57, who was once dubbed "America's favourite Saudi", was relieved of all his roles - including interior minister.