Events in Saudi Arabia have caught the attention of the world. The Saudi monarch sacked the Crown Prince #Muhammad Bin Nayef and appointed his son Bin Salman as the heir apparent. By doing this, he violated age-old tribal laws of succession of the House of Saud. The #King who wields absolute power was able to get the backing of almost 90% of the members of the ruling family. The Royal Decree was published by the state news agency Saudi Press Agency (SPA).

The king called on the public and all members of the Royal family to publicly express allegiance to the new crown prince who is his son. Bin Salman is 31 and is supposed to be the progressive face of the regime.

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The king who is 80 and ailing for some time, acted swiftly and also stripped the crown prince of his position as the Interior Minister and chief of police. Abdulaziz bin Saud al-Saud replaced him. Al Jazeera News Channel has reported this news.

Qatar

The move was expected for some time. During the visit of Donald Trump, it became apparent that Muhammad Bin Salman would be the next king. He was instrumental in getting the US President to visit Saudi Arabia. The question many are asking why the king took the decision to sack the crown prince. It is now learned that Muhammad Bin Nayef disapproved of the Qatar policy. He was not in favor of a blockade and trade embargo against Qatar. In the final analysis, he lost out, and the king chose his son. He had at one time advocated an invasion of Iran.

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In early June Saudi Arabia took the lead along with other nations in cutting relations with Qatar. The Saudis are also fighting a war in Yemen for last two years.

Absolute power

The king in Saudi Arabia wields absolute power. Probably he waited for Trump's visit to be over and get his support before taking this decision. The King is clear that he wants to give his son a chance to rule. He did not want Nayef to continue and carried out what can only be termed a palace coup. Nayef was caught unaware, and he pledged allegiance to the new crown prince. He really had no choice.

Future

The royal monarchy has been ruling Saudi for decades and is the staunchest ally of the USA in the Middle East. America has just concluded a100 billion dollar arms deal with the Saudis. The Americans have put all their eggs in the Saudi basket. One is reminded of similar support to the Shah of Iran who ultimately had to flee the country in 1979. There are undercurrents of hostility to the Saudi monarchy which could erupt at a later date.