Speed Reads

saudi shakeup

King Salman names his son as Saudi Arabia's new crown prince

In a shakeup, Saudi Arabia's King Salman on Wednesday appointed his son, Mohammed bin Salman, as crown prince, removing his nephew Prince Mohammed bin Nayef from the line of succession and stripping him of his crown prince title and position as the country's counterterrorism czar.

Mohammed bin Salman, 31, is already defense minister and head of the council aiming to reform Saudi Arabia's economy, and had been the deputy crown prince. In a royal decree issued over the weekend, the king restructured the country's systems for prosecutions, which took away Mohammed bin Nayef's power to oversee criminal investigations. The king has near absolute powers, and a royal decree issued Wednesday says that 31 of the 34 members that make up the Allegiance Council — all powerful relatives of the monarch — supported changing the line of succession.