Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
Mohammed bin Salman Biography
Mohammed bin Salman is the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia and the heir apparent to the throne. He who also holds several other positions such as First Deputy Prime Minister, President of the Council for Economic and Development Affairs, and Minister of Defense. He is often described as the true power behind the throne of his father, King Salman, who appointed him Crown Prince by removing Muhammad bin Nayef from all positions. He is best known for undertaking an enormous reform endeavor that curbed the powers of the religious police, removed the ban on female drivers, and established an Entertainment Authority that paved the way for Saudi Arabia’s first public concert by a female singer. He has cracked down on corruption, which however, some political critics term as a power grab in disguise, designed to eliminate his political rivals under the pretense of corruption. Interestingly, he himself has been criticized for his lavish lifestyle and violations of human rights.
Salman of Saudi Arabia, Fahda bint Falah bin Sultan bin Hathleen al-Ajmi
Abdulaziz bin Salman Al Saud, Ahmed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Bandar Bin Salman Al Saud, Fahd bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Faisal bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Hassa Bint Salman Al Saud, Khalid bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Nayef Bin Salman Al Saud, Rakan Bin Salman Al Saud, Saud Bin Salman Al Saud, Sultan bin Salman Al Saud, Turki Bin Salman Al Saud
Prince Mohammed bin Salman married his cousin Princess Sara bint Mashoor bin Abdulaziz in 2008. They have four children together, two boys named Prince Salman and Prince Mashhour, and two girls named Princess Fahda and Princess Nora. Prince Mohammed bin Salman is the chairman of the Prince Mohammed bin Salman Foundation, also known as MiSK, which attempts to further the goals set by Vision 2030, by empowering the younger generation.
Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud was born on August 31, 1985 in Riyadh to current King Salman and his third spouse, Fahda bint Falah bin Sultan bin Hathleen. His mother is the granddaughter of Rakan bin Hithalayn, who was the head of the Al Ajman tribe. He completed his primary education in the city of Riyadh and was ranked among the kingdom's top 10 students. He then graduated with a law degree from King Saud University, where he ranked second in class.
King Saud University
After completing his graduation, Prince Mohammed bin Salman established a number of firms working in the private sector before becoming involved in governmental work as the personal aide to his father. He worked for the Saudi Cabinet as a consultant for the Experts Commission. He began his political journey in 2007 when he became a full-time adviser to the Council of Ministers. On December 15, 2009, he became a special advisor to his father, who was serving as the governor of Riyadh Province. During this time, he quickly rose from one position to another, and continued to serve as parttime consultant for the Experts Commission till 2013. He was the secretary-general of the Riyadh Competitive Council, special advisor to the chairman for the King Abdulaziz Foundation for Research and Archives, and a board of trustees member for Albir Society in Riyadh. One month after the death of Crown Prince Sultan bin Abdulaziz in October 2011, his father began his ascent to power by becoming second deputy prime minister and defense minister. He made Salman his private advisor at this time. After Crown Prince Nayef bin Abdulaziz Al Saud died in June 2012, his father became the new crown prince and first deputy prime minister, which moved him up to the No.2 position in the hierarchy. On March 2nd, 2013, Mohammed bin Salman was appointed the president of the Crown Prince court after Prince Saud bin Nayef, who previously held the position, was appointed governor of the Eastern Province. He became a state minister and a member of the council of ministers on April 25, 2014. After the death of King Abdullah, his father, King Salman, ascended to the throne, while Mohammed bin Salman was appointed Minister of Defense and was named as the Secretary General of the Royal Court. He immediately faced growing political unrest as rebel Houthis took control of northern Yemen in late 2014 and soon after President Abdrabbuh Mansur Hadi and his cabinet’s resigned. His first step was to impose a naval blokcade and mobilize a pan-GCC coalition to intervene via air strikes a series of suicide bombings in Sanaa by Houthis. In March 2015, he played a major role when Saudi Arabia led a coalition of countries allied against the Houthi rebels to restore President Hadi back in power. He also maintained restrictive coordination across security services and drove operations from the Maldives. On 29 January 2015, he was named the chair of the newly established Council for Economic and Development Affairs, which replaced the disbanded Supreme Economic Commission. After being called the 'architect of the war in Yemen' by 'The Economist', he denied the title in an interview, explaining the mechanism of the decision-making institutions behind the intervention. In April 2015, by royal decrees of King Salman, Muhammad bin Nayef and Prince Mohammed bin Salman respectively became Crown Prince and Deputy Crown Prince, with him in control over Saudi Aramco. On June 21, 2017, he became the Crown Prince and the heir apparent to the throne after his father decided to depose Muhammad bin Nayef.
In April 2016, Prince Mohammed bin Salman announced his intention to restructure Saudi Arabia's economy, and introduced Vision 2030, the country's strategic orientation for the next 15 years. It details the various measures to be taken in developing non-oil revenues ranging from privatization of the economy to e-government and sustainable development. He successfully overturned tradition by restricting the powers of the religious police, and established an Entertainment Authority which has hosted comedy shows, pro wrestling events and monster truck rallies. He also intends to provide 'Green cards' for non-Saudi foreigners and has announced a project to build a 334 square kilometer city, one of the world’s largest cultural, sports and entertainment cities, in Al Qidiya. After publicly warning about a corruption crackdown in May 2017, he orchestrated the arrest of over 40 princes and government ministers, which also included Saudi prince and billionaire AlWaleed bin Talal, for corruption and money laundering. While some saw it as a step towards reform, the international media labeled the purge as a power grab attempt, reporting that it was not clear what "those detained are suspected of". Thanks to his cultural reforms, Saudi Arabia’s first public concert by a female singer was held in December 2017, following which a sports stadium in Jeddah became the first in the Kingdom to admit women. In early 2018, it was announced that public cinemas in Saudi Arabia would reopen after a ban of 35 years. He is also credited for having influenced the removal of the ban on female drivers in September 2017. He also stated that by denouncing the rigid doctrines that were strangulating the Saudi Arabia, the country is returning to its roots of moderate Islam.