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Succession change could spark Saudi policy volatility

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Significance

King Salman on June 21 named his 31-year-old son to succeed him, dismissing Crown Prince Mohammed bin Nayef from all positions, including that of interior minister. Mohammed bin Nayef led the kingdom’s internal security efforts for over a decade.

Impacts

  • Mohammed bin Salman is hawkish on Iran, increasing the risk of bilateral confrontation.
  • It is possible that the king might abdicate in favour of his son, especially if his health deteriorates.
  • Former King Abdullah’s son Mit’ab could be replaced as head of the National Guard by a Salman loyalist.
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