Saudi Arabia’s King Salman Al-Saud made his son his successor on Wednesday, removing his nephew as Crown Prince.
A royal decree appointed Mohammed bin Salman crown prince and deputy prime minister.
It said Crown Prince Mohammed bin Nayef, a counter-terrorism chief admired in Washington for putting down an al Qaeda campaign of bombings in 2003-06, was relieved of all positions.
The royal decree said the decision by King Salman to promote his son and consolidate his power was endorsed by 31 out of 34 members of the Allegiance Council, made up of senior members of the ruling Al-Saud family.
Throughout the early morning, it aired footage of Mohammed bin Nayef pledging allegiance to the younger Mohammed bin Salman who knelt and kissed his older cousin’s hand.
“I am content,” Prince Mohammed bin Nayef said. Prince Mohammed bin Salman replied: “We will not give up taking your guidance and advice.”
A senior Saudi official said the decision was taken due to what he called special circumstances presented to the members of the Allegiance Council.
He added that Mohammed bin Nayef supported the decision in a letter sent to the king.
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