Saudi Crown Prince Died
October 22, 2011 by staff
Saudi Crown Prince Died, Saudi Crown Prince Sultan bin Abdul Aziz has died, the palace announced Saturday, leaving his brother Prince Nayef the likely successor to the ailing King Abdullah at a time of crisis Middle East.
The Crown Prince, 80 years according to government records, he served as minister of defense, oil capo for nearly five decades, but had been in the United States since mid-June to receive medical treatment. He had surgery in July.
A half brother of King Abdullah, Sultan spent long periods abroad for medical treatment not revealed.
A Western diplomat, speaking to AFP on condition of anonymity, said Prince Sultan had been connected to life support systems at New York Presbyterian Hospital and declared “clinically dead” for over a month ago.
Condolences flooded in the realm of world leaders as the news of the prince’s death was confirmed.
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on a trip to the Central Asian nation of Tajikistan, said the prince was “lost”, stressing Washington’s enduring ties with the Gulf oil-rich state.
“I offer my deepest condolences for this loss to King Abdullah and the Saudi people,” he said. “We will miss him.”
In Jordan, King Abdullah II World Economic Forum opened in the City of the Dead Sea resort in the country with a minute of silence in honor of the prince died, hailing it as a “defender of the Arab and Muslim causes.”
British Prime Minister, David Cameron, said he was “saddened” to learn of the death of the Sultan.
“I had many friends in this country, and we have all benefited from his wisdom and experience in international affairs during his long years of service,” said the premier.
Prince Charles, heir to the throne, wrote to King Abdullah, his Clarence House office said.
“The Prince of Wales sent a personal letter of condolence to King of Saudi Arabia expressed its profound sadness at the news,” said a spokesman.
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, despite strained relations with Riyadh by repression of its security forces’ deadly protests against the regime, also sent his condolences to the king.
Sultan died while King Abdullah, the same 87, remains in hospital in Riyadh, a week after I had a back operation. State television aired footage Wednesday’s King Abdullah at the hospital while receiving royal dignitaries.
The king had surgery in November for a debilitating herniated disc complicated by a hematoma or blood clot that put pressure on your spine, and underwent additional surgery to repair several vertebrae.
The last operation was intended to repair a ligament decreased about a third vertebra. State media said the surgery was a success.
Advanced age and frail health of the king and his siblings in line to succeed him have expressed concern about the future of the oil on the face of the crisis shaking the Arab world.
Al-Saud family has ruled Saudi Arabia since the establishment of the kingdom in 1932 and its rules of succession to the throne passes to turn the children of its founder, Abdul Aziz, all of which are now higher.
Prince Nayef, who is expected to be the crown prince, is 78 and was named second deputy prime minister in March 2009, filling a vacuum potential in the line of succession.
Another half-brother of King Abdullah, the portfolio holder inside.
Except for some manifestations of the Shiite minority in eastern Saudi Arabia, the Sunni absolute monarchy has been largely spared the wave of radical pro-democracy protests other Arab countries.
However, it has felt increasingly threatened by the growing influence in the region of its rival Shiite Iran, accusing Riyadh of sowing sectarian tensions.
In March, Riyadh led military intervention ruled by Sunni Gulf states of Bahrain, Sunni ruling family as the month crushed pro-democracy protests led by the island state’s Shiite majority.
Prince Sultan’s Funeral to be held on Tuesday after his body has been repatriated from the United States.
Sultan had battled colon cancer since 2004, going to Switzerland and then to the United States to seek treatment, according to diplomats.
His long illness and absence abroad up important government decisions, while raising questions about how the monarchy would materialize in the next generation of the Al-Saud.
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