Thursday, November 30, 2023

Iran commiserates with Saudis on king’s passing

Iran has extended condolences to the Saudi government and nation on the passing of the country's King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud.

Iranian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Marzieh Afkham condoled with Saudis on the monarch’s demise, saying Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif will, on behalf of the Tehran government, attend an official memorial service due to be held in the Saudi capital, Riyadh, on Saturday.

Meanwhile, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani also extended condolences to the Saudi government and people on the monarch’s demise.

King Abdullah died at the age of 90 on Friday and his 77-year-old half brother, Salman, succeeded him.

The king reportedly died at hospital, where he had been receiving medical treatment for several weeks.

King Abdullah, who was admitted to the King Abdulaziz Medical City in the capital Riyadh in late December, had been suffering from pneumonia and was reportedly breathing with the help of a tube.

The Saudi king’s death has raised concerns about the future of the oil-rich country in the face of anti-government demonstrations.

Salman was named Saudi crown prince in June 2012 after the death of Prince Nayef bin Abdul Aziz. Salman has recently represented King Abdullah at most public events because of the monarch’s ailing health.

Salman bin Abdulaziz, the new king, will also serve as prime minister and defense minister in the Arab state.

But the 79-year-old is reportedly in poor health and is unlikely to rule for as long as his elder sibling.

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