Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah breathes his last

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File Pics : Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud
File Pics : Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud

Ruler of Saudi Arabia, Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud died, at the age of 90, according to the royal court. After the demise, Abdullah’s half-brother, Crown Prince Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud was  given the responsibility of the throne. The President of the UAE, Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed, said King Abdullah dedicated his life to the Saudi people.

 “We are sad at the death of one of the most admirable leaders of the Arab Nation who generously gave everything to his people and his nation and sincerely stood for the causes of the Arab and the Muslim Nations,” Sheikh Khalifa said in a statement.

New crown prince of Saudi Arabia is Muqrin bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, the youngest son of King Abdulaziz ibn Saud, who founded the modern Saudi state in 1932.

Born in 1924, King Abdullah took up the reigns in 2005. Prior to that, he was the country’s de facto ruler for many years as his predecessor, King Fahd, was incapacitated by a stroke. As a reformer in Saudi Arabia, he advocated the rights of women, improved the economy, and played a significant role in foreign affairs, including the sensitive issues such as the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, and the war in Syria.

 He dexterously navigated his country through the Arab Spring upheavals by backing key allies, employing assertive foreign policy and introducing some domestic reforms. Abdullah’s death comes at a crucial time, when Saudi Arabia is leading the fight against the extremist group ISIL, which has unleashed a terror attacks creating a global turmoil. Another issue that dogs the Kingdom is its equation with United States especially in the context of fight against terrorism.

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