The new Emir Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa al-Thani announced a limited cabinet reshuffle on 11 July, in a move that had been widely anticipated since the 27 June takeover. All the main cabinet positions remained unchanged, with only one cabinet member, Emiri Diwan Affairs Minister Eisa Ghanim al-Kawari, being replaced. The cabinet reshuffle announcement was accompanied by a clarification on the rules of succession, which the official Qatar News Agency (QNA) said would go to one of the emir’s sons.
The new cabinet has Sheikh Hamad as prime minister. The emir’s brother Sheikh Abdulla Bin Khalifa al-Thani was elevated to the position of deputy prime minister and retains his previous position of interior minister. Former Public Health Minister Sheikh Hamad Bin Suhaim al-Thani becomes the new Minster of State of Emiri Diwan Affairs, while Ali Saeed al-Khayarin takes over the health portfolio. No mention was made in the announcement of the former Labour, Social Affairs & Housing Minister Abdul Rahman Saad al-Derhem, and it was unclear whether he had been replaced or whether his name was absent due to a pending re-organisation of the ministry.
The emir also made several ministerial appointments outside the cabinet. These included: Sheikh Hassan Bin Abdulla Bin Mohammed al-Thani as chief of the intelligence apparatus; Sheikh Abdel Rahman Abdulla Bin Zaid al- Mahmoud as head of the Islamic courts; Sheikh Falah Bin Jassem Bin Jabr al-Thani as president of the civil service bureau; Abdulla Bin Khalifa al-Attiya as director of the new emir’s office; Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saif al-Thani as minister of state without portfolio; and Ahmed Abdulla al- Mahmoud as minister of state for foreign affairs.
In addition, changes took place at the undersecretary level in the Information, interior and municipal affairs & agriculture ministries.
On the question of the succession, QNA said that the emir had issued a decision, under which he will appoint, with approval of the ruling family, one of his sons as their apparent. ‘The rule of state is hereditary in the family of Al-Thani,’ it said. ‘It transfers from the father to one of his sons.’