Salman bin Abdul-Aziz Al-Saud
King of Saudi Arabia
Salam bin Abdul-Aziz Al-Saud, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s seventh monarch, succeeded King Abdullah ibn, Abdul Aziz, in January 2015. He was born in Riyadh on December 31, 1935. He has held the status of Crown Prince since June 2012, before King Abdullah’s death.
From 1955 to 1960, and again from 1963 until 2011, Salman was governor of Riyadh Province. During his tenure, Riyadh grew from a modest hamlet to a rich city with a population of over 7 million people.
Arab’s nation most powerful monarch, King Salman’s mainly influencing the world in three critical areas: Firstly, having the two holy cities Makkah and Madinah, which inspire millions of Muslims around the world. Secondly, Saudi Arabia is one of the largest crude oil and refined petroleum products exporters in the globe, which enhances the country’s role on an international stage. Lastly, as the richest Muslim country, and have a great influence on the Muslim world, they propagate Islam through its huge propagation (da’wa) network.
King Salman is the head of the world’s largest da’wa network of missionary Muslims in the world, promoting the Salafi branch of Sunni Islam.
The startling changes have come in the line of succession in 2015 by King Salman. He has appointed his son, Mohammad bin Salam bin Abdul-Aziz as Crown Prince of the Kingdom, replaced Mohammed bin Nayef, on June 21, 2017.
The Hijaz is a region in the west of Saud Arabia that has two holy cities Makkah, and Madinah. King Salman has great significance in the global Muslim community through the custodian of two holy mosques, Masjid Al-Haram, and Masjid Al- Nabawi.
The city of Makkah is the main pilgrimage site for more than 1.9 billion Muslims. In a month of Dhuʻl-Hijjah (Zil-Hajj), Muslims around the world travel to Makkah to perform the 5th pillar of Islam called the Hajj. Every year approximately 4 million pilgrims perform the Hajj. Meanwhile, throughout the year approximately 10 million pilgrims, including Saudi residents and GCC citizens perform the Umrah (the lesser Hajj). To accommodate millions of pilgrims, a multi-billion-dollar expansion to the two mosques is well underway.
Saudi’ control 20pc of the world’s oil-proven reserves, the oil reserves in the kingdom make him (King Salman) a key player in the global petroleum industry.
To curb Iranian influence in the region, in March 2015, King Salman launched a nine-state collation campaign against Houthi rebels in Yemen. The conflict has become even more complicated as cracks appear in the coalition with the UAE, backing a new faction.
In his kingship, King Salman has taken various steps to modernize Saudi conservative society, including allowing women to drive and move freely, opening cinemas, and music concerts.