Saudi sources told Reuters news agency that the former foreign minister Saud al-Faisal (75) passed away this Thursday in the United States, two months after retiring from politics for reasons related to his health.
Al-Faisal served as foreign minister for forty years, making him the world’s longest serving foreign minister, according to Al-Jazeera. He was appointed in 1975 after the assassination of his father King Faisal. The late Amir suffered from Parkinson’s disease according to the Saudi Foreign Ministry, and Al-Jazeera reports that he suffered from chronic back pain the last few years.
During his forty-year tenure, Prince Saud saw the end of the cold war, the failure of pan-Arab nationalism, the Israeli invasions of Lebanon (1978, 1982, 2006), the outbreak of the Palestinian intifadas (1987, 2000), Iraq’s invasions of Iran and Kuwait (1980, 1990), and the US-led invasion of Iraq (2003).