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Saudi king empowers young reformer son in succession shake-up

10:28 EDT 21 Jun 2017 | Yahoo News

Saudi king empowers young reformer son in succession shake-upBy Stephen Kalin and William Maclean DUBAI (Reuters) - Saudi Arabia's King Salman made his son next in line to the throne on Wednesday, handing the 31-year-old sweeping powers as the kingdom seeks radical overhaul of its oil-dependent economy and faces mounting tensions with regional rival Iran. Although Mohammed bin Salman's promotion to crown prince had long been expected among those who follow the royal family closely, the timing was a surprise, and puts the kingdom's future in relatively untested hands. Mohammed bin Salman replaces his cousin, Prince Mohammed bin Nayef, a veteran security chief who led the Saudi campaign against Islamic State and al Qaeda, at a time when Riyadh faces tensions with Qatar and Iran and is locked into a war in Yemen.


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