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Fahd bin Abdulaziz

Fahd bin Abdulaziz Al Saud,   (16 March 1921 – 1 August 2005) was the King of Saudi Arabia from 1982 to 2005.

Early life and education

Fahd bin Abdulaziz was born in Riyadh in 1921.[1][2] He is the eighth son of Ibn Saud.[3] His mother was Hassa Al Sudairi[4] and he was the eldest member of the Sudairi Seven.[5]Fahd's education took place at the Princes' School in Riyadh, a school established by Ibn Saud specifically for the education of members of the House of Saud.[6] He received education for four years as a result of his mother's urging.[7] While at the Princes' School, Fahd studied under tutors including Sheikh Abdul-Ghani Khayat.[8] Then he went on to receive education at the Religious Knowledge Institute in Mecca.[6][9]

Early political positions

Prince Fahd was made a member of the royal advisory board at his mother's urging.[10] In 1945, Prince Fahd traveled on his first state visit to San Francisco for the signing of the UN charter.[11] On this trip he served under his brother, Prince Faisal, who was at the time Saudi Arabia's foreign minister.[9] In 1953, Fahd led his first official state visit, attending the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II on behalf of the House of Saud.[8][12][13] On 24 December 1953, Prince Fahd was appointed education minister, being the first person holding this post in the country.[14][15]Prince Fahd led the Saudi delegation to the League of Arab States in 1959, signifying his increasing prominence in the House of Saud—and that he was being groomed for a more significant role. In 1962, Fahd was given the important post of interior minister.[7] As interior minister he headed the Saudi delegation at a meeting of Arab Head of States in Egypt in 1965.[9] He was named second deputy prime minister in 1967, which was created for the first time by King Faisal.[9][16]

Crown Prince

After the death of King Faisal in 1975, Fahd was named first deputy prime minister and concurrently crown prince in 1975.[17][18] Although Prince Fahd had two elder brothers, Prince Nasser and Prince Saad, who had prior claims to the throne, but both were considered unsuitable candidates.[17] By contrast, Prince Fahd had served as minister of education from 1954 to 1960 and minister of interior from 1962 to 1975.[17]
Appointment of Prince Fahd as both crown prince and first deputy prime minister made him a much more powerful figure in contrast to the status of King Khaled when he had been crown prince during King Faisal's reign.[19]


When King Khalid died on 13 June 1982, Fahd succeeded to the throne. He was the fifth king of Saudi Arabia.[20] However, the most active period of his life was not his reign, but when he was Crown Prince.[21] He adopted the title "Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques" in 1986, replacing "His Majesty", to signify an Islamic rather than secular authority.[9]

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