Saudi King Salman ousted his nephew as crown prince on Wednesday and installed his son Mohammed bin Salman – the first of a new generation set for power in a conservative kingdom used to ageing leaders.
His appointment completes a gradual removal of powers from Mohammed bin Nayef, 57, who has been fired, with his rise symbolising the hopes of Saudi’s youthful population, more than half of which is under 25.
According to a royal decree issued by the official Saudi Press Agency, Mohammed bin Salman, 31, was also named deputy prime minister, and maintains his post as minister of defence.
The appointment of Mohammed bin Salman caps a tumultuous two years since Salman, 81, ascended the throne and named the thick-bearded Mohammed bin Salman deputy crown prince, or second in line to the throne.
In a conservative kingdom used to ageing leaders, the rise of the young prince symbolises the hopes of a youthful local population, more than half of which is under 25.
The hard-charging Mohammed bin Salman’s public profile rapidly eclipsed that of the crown prince.
(Feature image source: AFP)