Rulers and ministers from the UAE have attended the funeral of Prince Saud Al Faisal, who served as foreign minister of Saudi Arabia for four decades.
Prince Saud’s body arrived on Saturday morning at King Abdulaziz International Airport in Jeddah from the US, where he died on Thursday aged 75. His body was taken to Al Adel Cemetery in Mecca.
A delegation including Sheikh Hamdan bin Zayed, the Ruler’s Representative in the Western Region, and Sheikh Saif bin Zayed, Minister of Interior and Deputy Prime Minister, performed funeral prayers. Sheikh Hamdan told state news agency Wam that Prince Saud had led his country’s diplomacy “with wisdom and diligence”.
“His cumulative experience was a genuine reference when dealing with issues and events,” he said.
“For the past 25 years the deceased was an elder brother who had been giving us advice on a number of issues. He was also an advocate for the oppressed.”
Other UAE dignitaries who attended included Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed, Foreign Minister, Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak, Minister of Culture, Youth and Community Development, Dr Anwar Gargash, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, and Rashid Al Nuaimi, former foreign minister. The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman of Saudi Arabia, led the worshippers in the funeral prayer.
Prince Khalid Al Faisal, adviser to the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques and Governor of Mecca, will receive mourners at his Jeddah palace for three days.
Prince Saud held his role from October 1975 until April this year making him the world’s longest-serving foreign minister.