Untangling the web of Saudi family poltics

June 21, 2012

By Associated Press and Worldview

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The death of Crown Prince Nayef bin Albdulaziz al Saud last week may have made Saudi family politics even more difficult to predict.  Who will be the next heir to King Abdullah? One likely candidate is Defense Minister Prince Salman bin Abdul-Aziz. He was just made crown prince.
The official announcement Monday came the day after the burial of Prince Nayef, who died last week in Geneva. He had been named the heir to the Saudi throne in November.

The 76-year-old Prince Salman is the third successor for the 88-year-old King Abdullah in the past year in one of the West's most critical Middle East allies.

Thursday on Worldview, Middle East scholar Joseph Kéchichian tells Worldview what the jostling means for the future of Saudi politics and U.S.–Saudi relations.

Kéchichian has written about Saudi Politics, his most recent publications include Faysal: Saudi Arabia's King for All Seasons and Power and Succession in the Arab Monarchies