According to Saudi State Media, the king of Saudi Arabia, ‘Abdullah Ibn ‘Abdel-‘Aziz Al-Saud (Age 90), has passed away on Thursday night at 6 P.M. Riyadh Time after suffering for months from terminal lung cancer. King ‘Abdullah was recently hospitalized for sever pneumonia, which left him hospitalized for a number of days; this led many to believe that the Saudi King was on life support.
King ‘Abdullah succeeded his deceased half-brother, King Fahd, in August of 2005 at the age of 79, making him the oldest Saudi monarch to ascend to the throne. His rule began with the liberalization of many social institutions; which included a government scholarship that allowed men and women to study abroad. He also partnered with the U.S. President, George W. Bush to combat Al-Qaeda inside of Saudi Arabia and Yemen.
However, during the latter years of his rule, King ‘Abdullah faced foreign scrutiny for his poor record on human rights; specifically, women’s rights. His role in the “Arab Spring” came under question when he ordered the Saudi Army to quell the peaceful protesters in Bahrain; this resulted in a number of countries becoming outspoken towards his brutality.
The Saudi Government has cut all local television programs and replaced them with non-stop Quranic verses in honor of their deceased king. The Saudi Government has not issued an official statement on the death of King ‘Abdullah; however, many believe that his brother, King Salman, is next in line to rule the Al-Saud realm.