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Saudi king’s sons well-placed for transition

King Abdullah’s sons hold key positions of influence in the government as the kingdom transitions to the next generation of Saudi royals.
Saudi Arabia's Prince Turki bin Abdullah al Saud, deputy governor of the Riyadh, meets Saudi Royal Force pilots during the inauguration of the Bahrain International Airshow held at the Sakhir Air Base,  south of Manama, January 16, 2014. REUTERS/Hamad I Mohammed (BAHRAIN - Tags: ROYALS POLITICS TRANSPORT MILITARY) - RTX17GM3
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Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz, who will turn 90 this summer, has quietly placed his own sons in positions of power and influence in the kingdom. His sons have increasing authority in the Foreign Ministry, National Guard and two key governorships and are well-placed to play long-term roles as power passes to the next generation of the royal family.

The king is like all of his predecessors in seeking to place his own progeny in positions of importance. That is, after all, how monarchies work. The Arab Spring, the wave of unrest that has swept the Arab world since early 2011, seems to have encouraged the king to put his own sons forward to help the kingdom cope with the unprecedented challenges it has faced in the last three years.

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