Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed, the long-ill leader of the UAE, dies

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the longtime ruler of the United Arab Emirates, died Friday, a quick assertion by the federal government’s state-run information company. He was 73 years previous.

UAE president Khalifa has overseen a lot of the nation’s speedy financial progress, and his title is immortalized on this planet’s tallest constructing, the Burj Khalifa, after he bailed out debt-ridden Dubai throughout its monetary disaster greater than a decade in the past.

The UAE Ministry of Presidential Affairs introduced the suspension of 40 days of mourning and three days of labor in all ministries and the personal sector from Friday, together with flags at half-mast.

He had lengthy since ceased to care for the day-to-day affairs of operating the nation. As a substitute, his half-brother, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, Mohammed bin Zayed, was seen because the de-factor ruler and resolution maker of key overseas coverage choices, comparable to becoming a member of a Saudi-led struggle in Yemen and main an embargo on neighboring international locations. Qatar in recent times.

Though Mohammed bin Zayed was anticipated to say the presidency, no fast announcement was made about his successor.

Not often seen in official images or public occasions for years, Khalifa succeeded his father, Sheikh Zayed, the UAE’s founder, in 2004.

Though authorities didn’t launch the information till the following day, he suffered a stroke and went to the emergency room ten years later. Since then it has largely been out of the general public eye.

In 2017, 2018 and 2019, Emirati state media revealed uncommon images and video of the Khalifa. Within the newest footage, Khalifa donned white sneakers and a white conventional gown whereas greeting Sheikh Mohammed and different rulers within the Emirates.

Khalifa, the eldest son of the UAE’s first chief after the federation was shaped in 1971, held the strongest place among the many seven semi-autonomous city-states that stretched alongside the Persian Gulf and Gulf of Oman coasts. His position as president stemmed from his place because the hereditary ruler of Abu Dhabi, the UAE’s largest and wealthiest emirate. Abu Dhabi is house to the federal capital.

Regardless of its dimension and immense oil wealth, Abu Dhabi has usually discovered itself within the shadow of the flamboyant neighboring emirate of Dubai, the Center East industrial hub that showcases each the UAE’s daring visions, and generally debt-fueled pipe goals, together with a big palm tree. man-made island that stood empty a few years after its creation.

In 2009, when Dubai’s wealth started to falter with the worldwide financial system, Khalifa led efforts to guard the federation by pumping billions of {dollars} in emergency rescue funds into Dubai. The 2 emirates don’t all the time agree on overseas coverage choices and compete with one another commercially. In 2003, he referred to as for the institution of a brand new airline, Etihad Airways, to compete with Dubai’s profitable and far bigger airline Emirates Air.

Khalifa has more and more used Abu Dhabi’s oil wealth to draw cultural and tutorial facilities comparable to branches of the Louvre museum and satellite tv for pc campuses of New York College and the Sorbonne. He additionally chaired efforts to maneuver the OPEC nation past its reliance on petrodollars with investments in renewable power analysis, together with plans for a futuristic low-carbon desert metropolis referred to as Masdar.

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