Former Saudi FM Who Opposed Iran Deal Passes Away

Former Saudi foreign minister Prince Saud al-Faisal died on Thursday, Saudi officials told the Al Jazeera network, two months after he retired following 40 years in the job.

Prince Saud, who was appointed in 1975, was the world's longest serving foreign minister when he was replaced on April 29 by Adel al-Jubeir, then ambassador to Washington.

A son of King Faisal, he was born in 1940 in Taif near Mecca, where in 1989 he helped negotiate the agreement that ended Lebanon's 15-year civil war.

A degree at Princeton in the 1960s was followed by years at the Petroleum Ministry, where he was taken under the wing of his father's oil minister Ahmed Zaki Yamani.

He was named foreign minister following the assassination of Prince Saud's father Faisal, who had retained the foreign affairs portfolio after being made king in 1962.

One of his initiatives was the Arab peace initiative, which would have 22 Arab countries normalize ties with Israel in return for an Israeli withdrawal from Judea and Samaria and has been rejected thus far by Israel.

Prince Saud had frequently said that the failure to help create a Palestinian state was the biggest disappointment of his career, according to Al Jazeera.

In March, he spoke out against the impending deal with Iran, warning the Islamic Republic should not be given “deals it does not deserve”.


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