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Saudi King Abdullah dies, Salman becomes new ruler

By The Citizen
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SaudiĀ Arabia's King Abdullah died early Friday and his brother Salman became king, the royal court in the world's top oil exporter and birthplace of Islam said in a statement carried by state television.

King Salman has named his half-brother Muqrin as his crown prince and heir.

'His Highness Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud and all members of the family and the nation mourn the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz, who passed away at exactly 1 a.m. Yesterday,' said the statement.

Abdullah, thought to have been born in 1923, had ruled Saudi Arabia as king since 2006, but had run the country as de facto regent for a decade after his predecessor King Fahd suffered a debilitating stroke. Agency report