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SAUDI ARABIA: King demotes Foreign Minister in reshuffle

Saudi Arabia’s King Salman has appointed a new foreign minister as part of a major cabinet reshuffle, according to Saudi state media.

A royal decree named Ibrahim al-Assaf as new foreign minister, demoting outgoing chief diplomat Adel al-Jubeir to the position of minister of state for foreign affairs.  Thursday’s shake-up is the first since the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi in Istanbul in October by a Saudi hit squad.

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The death sparked outrage internationally and jeopardised Riyadh’s relations with its western allies. A former finance minister, al-Assaf was among dozens of royal family members, government officials, and top businessmen detained during an “anti-corruption purge” in November 2017. Other notable changes include the appointment of Prince Abdullah bin Bandar bin Abdulaziz as chief of the National Guard, replacing Prince Miteb bin Abdullah.

 

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