ABDALLAH bin Abdelaziz

Prince ABDALLAH bin Abdelaziz Al-Saud has been made Heir Apparent by his half-brother King FAHD in 1982. He is also First Deputy Prime Minister and, since 1963, Commander of the National Guard. He is considered as less pro-Western (and certainly less pro-American) than his half-brothers King FAHD and Prince SULTAN, the Second Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defence.

Prince Abdullah is considered the leader of the Shammar branch, a rival source of power to the Sudairi branch. Since his mother was tribal, he is loyal to tribesmen and conservatives.

Prince ABDALLAH started playing a prominent role in Saudi Arabia when he served as regent from 1 January to 22 February 1996 after a stroke suffered by King FAHD. Only two years younger, he himself suffered a serious heart attack while in Morocco in 1986. To prepare himself for the Throne, Prince Abdallah paid a first visit to the United States and Japan in fall 1998. In mid-1999, he made an important visit in eight countries: South Africa, Italy, the Vatican, Morocco, Libya, Syria, Jordan and Egypt. The same year, he received the Iranian President Khatami in Jeddah. In May 2000, he also attended the funeral of President Hafez Al-Assad (indirectly indicating the lack of Saudi support to Rifaat Al-Assad).

Saudi Crown Prince presented a Middle East Pleace Plan in February 2002 whic was endorsed by the Arab Summit held in Beyrouth in March 2002. The peace plan required Israel to withdraw from the territories conquered in 1967 (the West Bank, the Gaza strip, the Golan Heights and East Jerusalem), the complete complying with resolutions 242 and 338, the principle of peace by territories as well as Israeli acceptance of a Palestinian independent state with its capital in East Jerusalem. In exchange the plan offered the establishment of normal relations with Israel. This plan was welcomed by the so-called Quartet (United Nations, European Union, the USA and Russia) as a substantial contribution towards peace.

Son of King ABDELAZIZ bin Abd al-Rahman bin Faysal Al-Saud and his eighth wife FAHDA, he has no full brother but two sisters, NUF and SITA.

Prince ABDALLAH has four wives (HUSSA, AIDA, ANUD and TADHI, seven sons and fifteen daughters.