List of kings of Saudi Arabia
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view • talk • edit The King of Saudi Arabia is Saudi Arabia's head of state and absolute monarch. He serves as the head of the Saudi Monarchy and House of Saud.
Within Saudi Arabia the king is known by the title of The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques (خادم الحرمين الشريفين), which refers to Saudi Arabia's jurisdiction over the mosques of Masjid al Haram in Mecca and Masjid al-Nabawi in Medina.
 Kings of Saudi Arabia (1932-Present) Name Picture Born-Died Reign start Reign end Abdul Aziz (Ibn Saud) 1876 - 1953 22 September1932 9 November1953 Saud 1902 - 1969 9 November1953 2 November1964 (deposed) Faisal 1906 - 1975 2 November1964 25 March1975 (assassinated) Khalid 1912 - 1982 25 March1975 13 June1982 Fahd 1921 - 2005 13 June1982 1 August2005 Abdullah 1924 - 1 August2005 Present King Abdul Aziz began conquering today's Saudi Arabia in 1902, by restoring his family as emirs of Riyadh. He then proceeded to conquer first the Nejd (1922) and then the Hejaz (1925). He progressed from Sultan of Nejd, to King of Hejaz and Nejd, and finally to King of Saudi Arabia (1932).
The other kings have all been sons of his, and all likely immediate successors to the reigning King Abdullah are his sons as well. Sons of Ibn Saud are considered to have primary claim on the Kingship of Saudi Arabia. This makes the Saudi Monarchy quite distinct from Western monarchies, which usually feature large, clearly defined royal families and orders of succession.
The King of Saudi Arabia is also considered the Head of the House of Saud and Prime Minister. The Crown Prince is also the "Deputy Prime Minister." The kings after Faisal have named a "second Deputy Prime Minister" as the subsequent heir after the Crown Prince. The current Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia is Abdullah's half-brother, Prince Sultan, and it is intended that a family assembly choose heirs thereafter from the next generation at some time in the future. The Second Deputy or third in line of succession is Prince Nayef.
Saudi Arabia is ruled by Islamic law and purports to be an Islamic state, but many Muslims see a monarchy as being a non-Islamic system of government. This attitude stems in part from traditional Sunni doctrine, which prefers selecting rulers based on who is most qualified, even though the caliphate became a hereditary system after the time of the first four Sunni Caliphs (the Rashidun).