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article imageSaudi Arabia's Crown Prince Sultan bin Abdul Aziz dead at 86

By JohnThomas Didymus     Oct 22, 2011 in World
Riyadh - Saudi Arabian Crown Prince Sultan bin Abdul Aziz died yesterday. The announcement of his death was made on Saudi state television on Saturday. The Crown Prince had colon cancer and had received treatment in Switzerland and the United States.
AFP report the Crown Prince, 86, died in a New York hospital. He was on life support at New York Presbyterian hospital and was declared "clinically dead" more than a month ago, soon after he had surgery.
Radio Liberty reported the Crown Prince died at dawn, October 22.
According to CNN, a statement released by the royal court read: "King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud mourns the death of his brother and his Crown Prince...Prince Sultan bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud."
Crown Prince Sultan bin Abdul Aziz was next in line to succeed King Abdullah, 87, who is still in hospital in Riyadh after a surgical operation for a herniated disc involving a blood clot pressing on his spine. State television recently showed footage of King Abdullah receiving members of the royal household on sickbed.
Saudi Arabia is ruled by the Al-Saud royal family founded by Abdul Aziz. The family has been in power since 1932. Concerns have been expressed about the advanced age of King Abdullah and brothers in line of succession, especially with the present popular uprisings sweeping through the Middle East. The Kingdom is run almost exclusively by a small circle of princes of the royal family. The Sunni Muslim dominated Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has remained peaceful in the midst of Middle East turmoil, with only minor protests by the Shiite minority in the east of the Kingdom.
With the death of of Crown Prince Sultan bin Abdul Aziz, Prince Nayef, a half-brother of King Abdullah, becomes Crown Prince. Prince Nayef is 78 years old. He was appointed second deputy prime minister in 2009.
Crown Prince Sultan bin Abdul Aziz was defense minister of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. He played an important role in the Gulf War, 1991. His son Prince Bandar bin Sultan Abdul Aziz Al-Saud, was former ambassador to the United States.
Crown Prince Sultan's funeral will be held on Tuesday.
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