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RIYADH – Saudi Arabia’s 86-year-old king has appointed his son, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, as the next prime minister, state news agency SPA reported.

Prince Mohammed, 37, is slowly rising to power in India, the world’s largest oil exporter, under his father, King Salman bin Abdulaziz.

SPA has not disclosed the reason for the move.

The crown prince, known by his initials MBS, already oversees many of Saudi Arabia’s major portfolios, including oil, defense, economic policy and domestic security, while his father remains head of state.

Since shoving his older cousin away in 2017, the heir to the throne, Prince Mohammed, has steadily centralized power in his hands, detained potential opponents and balanced power between branches of the royal family. It has overturned decades of tradition.

He is pushing for a sweeping economic reform program, and this year Hosts US President Joe Biden In the kingdom, turning the pages of years of friction Murder of Saudi journalist and critic Jamal Khashoggi in Istanbul by Saudi agents in Saudi king appoints crown prince as prime minister

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