The United Arab Emirates’ President Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al-Nahyan died aged 73 on Friday, state media stated, after battling sickness for a number of years.
The president of the oil-rich Gulf state, who was hardly ever seen in public, is probably going to get replaced by his brother, Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed, who was already seen because the UAE’s de facto ruler.
“The Ministry of Presidential Affairs has mourned to the UAE individuals, Arab and Islamic nations and the world the loss of life of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al-Nahyan,” the official WAM information company tweeted.
The ministry introduced 40 days of mourning, with flags at half-mast from Friday and work suspended in the private and non-private sector for the primary three days.
Sheikh Khalifa took over because the UAE’s second president in November 2004, succeeding his father because the sixteenth ruler of Abu Dhabi, the richest of the federation’s seven emirates.
He has hardly ever been seen in public since 2014, when he had surgical procedure following a stroke, though he has continued to subject rulings. The reason for loss of life was not instantly launched.
The UAE, a former British protectorate that was based in 1971, has gone from desert outpost to booming state in its quick historical past, fuelled by its oil wealth and Dubai’s rise as a buying and selling and monetary centre.
The Arab world’s second-biggest economic system behind Saudi Arabia has additionally begun to wield rising political affect, filling an area ceded by conventional powers comparable to Egypt, Iraq and Syria.
The nation of 10 million additionally joined army campaigns in Libya and Yemen and broke ranks with a lot of the Arab world to determine ties with Israel in 2020.
The bearded Sheikh Khalifa had minimize a frail determine on his occasional public appearances, whereas his brother Mohammed bin Zayed hosted world leaders and led diplomatic forays overseas.
“The Emirates has misplaced its virtuous son and chief of the ‘stage of empowerment’ and the trustee of its blessed journey,” Mohammed bin Zayed tweeted on Friday.
“His stances, achievements, knowledge, generosity and initiatives are in each nook of the nation.. Khalifa bin Zayed, my brother… might God have mercy on you and grant you entry to paradise.”
Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan tweeted condoling the loss of life of the UAE President, stateing that Sheikh Khalifa all the time stored cordial relations with Kerala.
“Deeply saddened by the passing of the UAE President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan who has all the time stored cordial relations with Kerala. He was a visionary chief who performed a key function in modernising the Emirates. His contributions will likely be remembered eternally,” tweeted Mr Vijayan.
Sheikh Khalifa, who had no formal increased training, led the UAE as Dubai emerged as Dubai emerged as a tourism and commerce hub and Abu Dhabi pumped oil as a key OPEC participant.
He got here to the rescue of Dubai when it was hit by the worldwide monetary disaster in 2009, extending a multi-billion-dollar lifeline to the debt-laden emirate.