The six princes who are first in line to succeed as rulers in the region’s kingdoms and emirates are: Prince Sultan bin Abdul Aziz al-Saud, Prince Nawaf al-Ahmad al-Jaber al-Sabah, Prince Salman bin Hamad bin Isa al-Khalifa, Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed al-Nahyan, Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum and Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani
Prince Sultan bin Abdul Aziz al-Saud
Title: Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia
Biography: Born in Riyadh in 1928, Crown Prince Sultan bin Abdul Aziz is the 15th son of King Abdul Aziz bin Abdulrahman al-Saud and head of the Sudairi branch of princes. He became heir to the throne on 1 August 2005, following the death of King Fahd. Sultan entered public service in 1947 when he was appointed governor of Riyadh. In 1953, he became agriculture minister and in 1955 he was appointed communications minister. During this time he oversaw the construction of the kingdom’s rail link between Dammam and Riyadh. He is currently defence minister and has been credited with establishing the kingdom’s modern armed forces. Sultan is also currently chairman of the Saudi Railways Organisation. In December 2009, he returned to Saudi Arabia, having spent more than a year in the US and Morocco for medical treatment and recuperation from cancer.
Contact: (+966) 14112222
Prince Nawaf al-Ahmad al-Jaber al-Sabah
Title: Crown Prince of Kuwait
Biography: In a surprising decision, Sheikh Nawaf, the half-brother of the current emir, Sabah al-Ahmed al-Jaber al-Sabah, was named crown prince on 7 February 2006. For the previous 85 years, the Al-Sabah family had alternated the position of emir and crown prince between the Al-Salem and Al-Jaber branches of the family. He was appointed interior minister in March 1978, and in January 1988, he was appointed defence minister. In March 2009, the emir, Sabah al-Ahmed al-Jaber al-Sabah, announced that Sheikh Nawaf would succeed his nephew, Nasser al-Mohammed al-Ahmed al-Sabah, to become the new prime minister of Kuwait. Sheikh Nawaf was one of the founders of the state’s modern police force and, until his appointment as crown prince, was also deputy chief of the Kuwait National Guard.
Contact: (+965) 888881
Prince Salman bin Hamad bin Isa al-Khalifa
Title: Crown Prince of Bahrain
Biography: Born on 21 October 1969, Prince -Salman was sworn in as Crown Prince of the Kingdom of Bahrain on 9 March 1999. Prior to this he was undersecretary of defence at the Defence Ministry for four years. Prince Salman was educated in Bahrain before earning a bachelor of arts degree at the American University in Washington, in 1992 and a master of philosophy degree in history from the UK’s Cambridge University, two years later. In 2002, he assumed the post of chairman of the Economic Development Board, which is leading economic reforms in Bahrain. More recently, in January 2008, Prince Salman was awarded the post of deputy supreme commander of the armed forces to oversee the management and implementation of public policy as well as military, administrative, economic and financial plans of the Bahrain Defence Force and the National Guard.
Contact: (+973) 1758 9999
Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed al-Nahyan
Title: Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi
Biography: Sheikh Mohammed, the younger brother of the ruler of Abu Dhabi and president of the UAE Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed al-Nahyan, became Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi in January 2004 and deputy supreme commander of the UAE armed forces in January 2005. He was born in 1961 and is the third son of Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan al-Nahyan. He is also chairman of the executive council of Abu Dhabi, which is responsible for development and planning in the emirate as well as head of Abu Dhabi Council for Economic Development. Since its establishment in 2002, he has been head of government-owned investment body Mubadala Development Company. Having been educated in the UAE, Mohammed, like Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum of Dubai, graduated from the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst, in the UK in 1979.
Contact: (+971) 2418999
Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum
Title: Crown Prince of Dubai
Biography: Sheikh Hamdan was appointed Crown Prince of Dubai on 1 February 2008. Born on 14 November 1982, the second son of Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum, ruler of Dubai and vice-president of the UAE, Sheikh Hamdan graduated from the UK’s Royal Military Academy Sandhurst in 2002 and later attended the London School of Economics in London. He was appointed chairman of the Dubai Executive Council in September 2006, where he oversees all Dubai government entities and supervises public sector and development strategies in the emirate. A keen horse rider, Sheikh Hamdan won the gold medal in the equestrian event at the Asian Games in Doha in 2006. In September 2006, Sheikh Hamdan launched -Takamul, an initiative that seeks to integrate people with special needs into mainstream society.
Contact: (+971) 43302111
Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani
Title: Crown Prince of Qatar
Biography: Sheikh Tamim became the heir apparent to the Qatari throne on 5 August, 2003 after his older brother, Sheikh Jasim bin Hamad al-Thani, renounced his rights to the throne, which he had accepted in 1996. Born in Doha on 3 June 1980, Sheikh Tamim is the fourth and youngest son of Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani, emir of Qatar, and his second wife, Sheikha Mozah bint Nasser al-Missned. He was educated in the UK, first studying at Sherborne School and Harrow School before graduating from the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst in 1998. He holds a number of key positions including chairman of the Supreme Education Council, chairman of the board of directors of Qatar Investment Authority and deputy commander in chief of the armed forces. He married Sheikha Jawahar bint Hamad al-Thani, daughter of Sheikh Hamad bin Suhaim al-Thani, in January 2005.
Contact: (+974) 4995900